Anaerobic digestion plant design

Louise Smyth

Making Feed-In Tariffs payments cost effective. Martin Grant reports 

The future of the UK renewable energy sector is at a crossroads, with renewable heat generation in particular, being a primary focus for the UK Government. However, the favoured technology path ahead is still not clear and with ever reducing FIT payments, innovative but cost effective renewable technologies will be a key factor of success.

In the recent autumn 2015 spending review the UK Government stated that it will be reducing funding for a number of Feed-In Tariffs (FIT) scheme payments to ensure that the UK continues to make progress towards its climate goals, in an efficient cost effective manner - delivering intended savings of almost £700 million by 2020-21.

In terms of Anaerobic Digestion, the present FIT payments place a heavy burden on amortising the initial capital cost as well as the on-going energy generated. Clearly, on this basis, being able to maximise the efficiency of the anaerobic digestion process, using the least amount of energy to sustain efficient digestion and biogas release, while reducing the upfront capital costs, will have a big impact on the net return on investment, and therefore payments received.

So what are some of the current innovations that can affect this efficiency?

The LIPP KomBio reactor is an outstandingly economical solution for energy production at biogas plants and stabilisation of sewage sludge. It has been in use in many countries for over twenty years. Quick build times, low investment costs, high operating safety and long service life are all characteristics of this integrated AD system. The KomBio is suitable for small and large plants and complies with water utility industry standards.

The KomBio digester system has a modular design: digester chamber volumes ranging from 100m3 to 2500m3 per unit are available – with an integrated gas accumulator and all the necessary functional and safety elements in each case. The combination of digester and gas accumulator provides a compact solution and saves on land requirements, expensive pipeline construction and additional containers.

Martin Grant is Lipp UK Marketing and Sales Manager.