Case Study: Accurate gas monitoring in a complex AD installation
The most recent UK anaerobic digester (AD) installation by leading supplier UTS Biogas features one of Gas Data’s Click! System gas analysers at the heart of the process.
The plant, at May Farm in Cambridgeshire, provides an impressive set of benefits as it is designed to:
- Supply both heat and power to Shropshire Energy’s on site mushroom farm
- Feed electricity into the national grid
- Provide digestate as a fertiliser for a local vegetable farm
When it is fully on stream the five tank system at the plant will produce 2.4 MW of electricity (equivalent to the needs of 5,000 homes). It is currently going through the commissioning process with the pasteurisation system being run up to full capacity as we go to press.
What’s particularly interesting in this instance is that the plant is part of the mushroom farm development and not an add-on to an existing facility. This highlights the role that AD has to play in the UK agricultural market and the potential for growth.
“May Farm is designed to use a mix of energy crops and vegetable outgrades, which isn’t too unusual. However we have had to cope with a higher than normal input of onions in this plant along with a seasonal fluctuation in supply.”
“Our team has been able to design a facility that can operate successfully with the high Hydrogen Sulphide levels that this produces. “
Gas Data’s Click! System provides monitoring for each of the five digester tanks and for the CHP engine, in one cabinet. This reduces the cost of the monitoring process and makes plant management much easier.
For Ben Sage the combination of capability and quality of service are a real plus point:
“Managing the quality of gas input to the CHP is paramount in this installation and the Click! System gives us access to all of the parameters we need. Gas Data have been on hand throughout installation and commissioning to provide their experience and expertise – and that saves us time and money.”
UTS are having a busy time. As the May Farm plant comes on stream another AD and composting site in Dagenham, running off food waste from London, is being commissioned.
Gas Data’s Chris Dakin says that the company is committed to supporting the roll out of AD into the agricultural sector:
“As UTS Biogas have demonstrated the challenges of working with a diverse range of input materials can be overcome. This must increase the opportunities for biogas across the UK whatever the local agricultural focus.”
“The Click! System has operational flexibility built in. It can analyse a wide range of gases and cope with multiple sample points, for instance, and these features can be easily upgraded or modified to suit the expansion of facilities or changes in process.”
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