The University of Hohenheim inaugurates its biogas laboratory

The production of electricity from biomass is currently experiencing a Boom comparable to that of wind energy. Since the 1er August 2004, the law on renewable energies guarantees operators of biogas plants 20 cents per kilowatt hour.

Thanks to its new biogas laboratory, the University of Hohenheim (Baden-Württemberg) shows how such facilities can be better designed and operated in the future. The biogas plants just produced 65 megawatts at the end of the millennium. They should produce close to 1000 by the end of next year. And the number of installations should, according to the professional association of biogas (Fachverband Biogas), go from 2500 to 4000.

In these installations, the current is produced more or less from waste: slurry, herbs or other plants. "With guaranteed prices over the next 20 years, it's a lucrative business for many farmers," says Thomas Jungbluth, director of the agricultural technology institute at Hohenheim University. "Thanks to this laboratory, we want to develop and test a new generation of efficient installations" explains Hans Oechsner, the
Director of the National Institute of Building and Agricultural Machinery. With 28 reactors, the installation allows simultaneous testing of different biomass materials with different devices and processes. The reactors are also filled under control of a machine and the
The amount of gas produced is automatically captured by a computer.

Read also: Afsse: 2 reports on the health impact of urban air pollution

contacts:
- Dr.sc.agr. Hans Oechsner - Landesanstalt fur Landwirtschaftliches
Maschinen- und Bauwesen - tel: + 49 711 459 2684, fax: + 49 711 459 2519 -
email :
oechsner@uni-hohenheim.de
Sources: Depeche IDW, Press Release of Hohenheim University,
06/12/2004
Editor: Nicolas Condette,
nicolas.condette@diplomatie.gouv.fr

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