Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Biogas in India in 2019

Introduction to Biogas Plants and Production in India

While technically biogas in India can be produced from any kind of natural product, the majority of times, biogas is produced from natural waste.

This waste might make up farming and crop waste, human waste and animal waste (cow dung for example). With a calorific worth of about 5000 KCal/ m3, biogas is an exceptional fuel for heating functions along with for producing electrical power.

Biogas production has actually been quite dominant in India at home and community levels (especially in rural backwoods) than on big scales.

In towns especially, lots of little biogas crops utilize the livestock waste (especially cow dung) and offer biogas utilized for house heating and cooking. It is approximated that over 2 million such biogas plants have actually been put into use, all through India.

When organic matters like cow dung, agricultural wastes, human excreta etc. subjected to bacterial decomposition in presence of water in absence of air, a mixture of CH4, C02, H2, H2S etc. is produced. These gases together is known as biogas. The residue left after the removal of biogas is a good source of manure and biogas is used as a good source of non-polluting fuel.

A one-cubic-meter digester, primed with cow dung to provide bacteria, can convert the waste generated by a four-person family into enough gas to cook all its meals and provide sludge for fertilizer.

A model this size costs about $425 but will pay for itself in energy savings in less than two years. That's still a high price for most Indians, even though the government recently agreed to subsidize about a third of the cost for these family-sized units.

If a biogas plant is taken care off well, it can be used for up to 25 years.

" Dr Aggarwal set up the plant at his home 4-5 years back. Describing how it functions, he shares, "Everyday, 10 kg cow dung, along with 15 litres of water, is put in the mixing tank.
"The cow dung is brought from the cowsheds from nearby areas, where the owners want to dispose it anyway. This mixture is fermented inside the fermentation tank by the anaerobic bacteria. The mixture is then converted into slurry through which methane gas and carbon dioxide gas are released," 
he shares. via
Image illustrates Biogas in India
The bio-gas is obtained from plant, animal and human waste, is also called as gobar gas in India. The main source of biogas is wet cow dung.

The other sources of biogas are: sewage, crop residue, vegetable wastes, waste wood, dry leaves of the plants, broken branches of trees, garbage, waste paper, poultry droppings, pig manures, algae, ocean kelp etc.

These plants are commonly known as Gobar gas plants because the usual raw material is cow dung (Gobar). The methodology involves in the process is to prepare a slurry of cow dung with water. Water is also be added to the slurry.

Biogas in India - Conclusion

Home biogas plants produce biogas from cow dung and certain organic household waste. This allows families to cook without any worries. There is no smoke any more, and the tedious chore of collecting wood is also dispensed with. Many women and children were busy collecting firewood one day a week; now they have more time to work and play.

The systems used in the production of biogas today are not efficient. There are no new technologies yet to simplify the process and make it abundant and low cost. 

This means large scale production to satisfy a large population is still not possible. Although the biogas plants available today are able to meet some energy needs, most individuals and governments are not willing to heavily invest in the sector. This aspect has led many people to put up biomass systems in their homes, which are short on capacity.

The Pdf version available of our main biogas article (not this one) is at:

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