Fecal biomass gasification for biofuel production: Study of thermochemical conversion and exogenous evaluation

Name: Elias Antonio Dalvi
Type: PhD thesis
Publication date: 07/12/2015

Namesort descending Role
Ricardo Franci Gonçalves Advisor *

Examining board:

Namesort descending Role
Asher Kiperstok First External Examiner *
José Joaquim Conceição Soares Santos Internal Examiner *
Julio Augusto Mendes da Silva External Examiner *
Marcio Ferreira Martins Co advisor *
Ricardo Franci Gonçalves Advisor *
Sérvio Túlio Alves Cassini Internal Examiner *

Summary: The present work is a study of human fecal biomass as a source of renewable alternative energy. The average Calorific Value and the Calorific Value depending on caloric diet allowed the determination of the energy potential of biomass worldwide, by continent and country. An analysis of feces of other animals was also performed and compared to the human feces under the caloric point of view, using the concept of Rejected Energy Index (IER, in Portuguese) which is the energy rejected per kilogram of body weight, and it was found that for human is the smallest. The use of human feces in the batch reactor simulating a gasifier downdraft yielded results and preliminary findings for later use in a downdraft gasifier with 20 kW capacity, using 0%, 10% and 20% moisture content and particle diameters of 15, 30 and 50 mm. A feasibility study was also carried out on the use of gasification technology as an alternative system for the treatment of feces, taking the concept of exergy as reference by means of two parameters: environmental exergetic efficiency, defined as the exergy ratio of the useful effect of the process to the total exergy consumed by human and natural resources, including all the exergy inputs. The renewabillity calculation was done using the Renewabillity Exergy Index defined as the exergy ratio of the products to the sum of the non-renewable exergy and destroyed exergy. Finally, a table was assembled which shows the environmental exergy efficiency parameters and the exergetic index renewability determined in this work as compared by the same parameters determined by BEJARANO (2009) for three of sewage treatment technologies: Sewage Barueri Treatment Plant (Brazil ), RAFA- Facultative Pond (Brazil) and Cañavelarejo Sewage Treatment Plant (Colombia); The results, although illustrative, indicate that gasification may become an advantageous step to be used in a sewage treatment system.
Keywords: human fecal biomass; calorific value, energy; exergy, gasification, syngas.

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