Biogas as Fuel in IC Engine | Advantages and Disadvantages
Biogas – Fuel in IC Engine
Biogas typically refers to a gas produced by the breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen. It is a renewable energy source, like solar and wind energy. Furthermore, biogas can be produced from regionally available raw materials and recycled waste and is environmentally friendly and CO2 neutral.
Biogas is produced by the anaerobic digestion or fermentation of biodegradable materials such as manure, sewage, municipal waste, green waste, plant material, and crops. Biogas comprises primarily methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) and may have small amounts of hydrogen sulphide (H2S), moisture and siloxanes.
The gases methane, hydrogen, and carbon monoxide (CO) can be combusted or oxidized with oxygen. This energy release allows biogas to be used as a fuel. Biogas can be used as a fuel in any country for any heating purpose, such as cooking. It can also be used in anaerobic digesters where it is typically used in a gas engine to convert the energy in the gas into electricity and heat. Biogas can be compressed, much like natural gas, and used to power motor vehicles.
Advantages of Biogas Energy
- It’s a renewable source of energy.
- It’s a comparatively lesser pollution generating energy.
- Biomass energy helps in cleanliness in villages and cities.
- It provides manure for the agriculture and gardens.
- There is tremendous potential to generate biogas energy.
- Biomass energy is relatively cheaper and reliable.
- It can be generated from everyday human and animal wastes, vegetable and agriculture left-over etc.
- Recycling of waste reduces pollution and spread of diseases.
- Heat energy that one gets from biogas is 3.5 times the heat from burning wood.
- Because of more heat produced the time required for cooking is lesser.
Disadvantages of Biogas Energy
- Cost of construction of biogas plant is high, so only rich people can use it.
- Continuous supply of biomass is required to generate biomass energy.
- Some people don’t like to cook food on biogas produced from sewage waste.
- Biogas plant requires space and produces dirty smell.
- Due to improper construction many biogas plants are working inefficiently.
- It is difficult to store biogas in cylinders.
- Transportation of biogas through pipe over long distances is difficult.
- Many easily grown grains like corn, wheat are being used to make ethanol.
- This can have bad consequences if too much of food crop is diverted for use as fuel.
- Crops which are used to produce biomass energy are seasonal and are not available over whole year.
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