Glossary

Biogas

Gas created by the decomposition of organic matters in absence of oxygen. It is mainly composed of methane (45-75%) and carbon dioxide (25-60%).

Other elements such as Nitrogen (N), Hydrogen sulphide (H2S) or Hydrogen (H) can also be found in small quantity depending on conditions.

Biogas is fast to produce comparing to other kind of gas produced from fossile resources. This is its main advantage and it can be used for heating, electricity production or biofuels.

Methane and Bio-methane (CH4)

Methane with the formula CH4 is the main component in biogas. It has a high calorific value which make it a good combustible. In many cities methane is piped into homes for domestic heating and cooking purpose. Another use of methane is for car fuel. It can be used in combustion engines and replace classical hydrocarbons fuels. Methane can be transported as a refrigerated liquid (liquefied natural gas or LNG). When the production of the gas is from short term biological processes it can be referred also as bio-methane. 

Landfill

A landfill site is a site for the disposal of waste. Many different methods are used in landfilling from the simplest rubbish dumping to the more advanced with control on emisison and collection of the landfill gas. Even if landfill is still widely used all over the world it is considered as the last solution on the priority list for waste management. 

Landfill gas

Gas emitted from the landfilled organic waste. 

Anaerobic digestion

Anaerobic digestion is the reduction of solid organic matter in available nutrient used by micro-organisms in absence of oxygen.

Digester

A digester is a tank where the digestion process is occurring. It is the main component of biogas plant and are also part of waste water treatment plant if the influent is treated by anaerobic digestion.  

Mesophilic 

Mesophilic process are running at a temperature between 20 and 45°C. The most used temperature for mesophilic anaerobic digestion is 37-38°C where mesophilic micro-organisms find their optimal temperature.

Thermophilic

Thermophilic process are running at a temperature between 45 and 122°C. The most used temperature for thermophilic anaerobic digestion is 55°C where thermophilic micro-organisms find their optimal temperature. With a temperature above 70°C, we talk generally about extreme-thermophilic.

Upgrading of biogas

Upgrading biogas is the process where biogas is cleaned by taking out of the gas CO2 and hydrogen sulfide. Result is generally a gas quality with approximately 95 to 100% methane in the flow which can be then use as biofuel in vehicles. At this stage the gas is called methane or biomethane.

Substrate

Material used for feeding the process of anaerobic digestion.

Digestate

Once substrate have been through the 

Bioenergy

Energy produced from biomass i.e. biological material from living or recently living organisms.

Photosynthesis

Carbon dioxide (CO2)

Biogas plants

Bioreactor

Biofuel

 

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