Press Release: SBIR Phase 1 Grant

Biomass Controls PBC has recently been awarded a SBIR Phase 1 grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
USDA entitled “A Pyrolysis-Combustion Treatment for Hog Manure Lagoons to Improve Rural Flood Resistance.”

The proposed phase 1 program is to develop and validate the use of our farmscale biogenic refinery pyrolysis-combustion process to convert lagoon hog manure to value-added biochar. The biogenic refinery can improve disaster vulnerability in farm operations by providing an alternative manure disposal route and a way to safely empty and convert existing hog manure lagoons to disaster impervious biochar. Biomass Controls PBC proposes to extend and develop a commercial application of their existing biogenic refinery suiting hog farm needs by: characterizing hog lagoon feedstock to determine any treatment necessary prior input to the biogenic refinery; optimizing the existing biogenic refinery processing to produce biochar from hog sludge; and characterizing the biochar. The proposed research would provide technical and economic results in applying the biogenic refinery to meeting the treatment needs of lagoon hog manure thereby reducing the vulnerabilities of rural communities to hazards.

Press Release: Ten Biogenic Refineries

Biomass Controls PBC has recently signed a contract with NativeEnergy to provide up to ten Biogenic Refineries in accordance with their NRCS-USDA Cig Grant.

Putnam, CT and Durham, NC – Biomass Controls PBC has recently signed a contract with NativeEnergy to provide up to ten Biogenic Refineries in accordance with their NRCS-USDA CIG grant. This collaboration intends to develop a system that will separate dairy manure solids from raw dairy manure slurry, where the separated solids portion will be pyrolyzed to produce biochar. The primary goals of the program are to:
• Reduce greenhouse gases associated with dairy manures
• Provide manure management benefits to the farm
• Reduce nutrient loading in the Lake Champlain watershed

biogenic refineries

Presentation: Transitioning Transformative Technologies

Thermal treatment of human feces is an effective means of managing both volume reduction and pathogen kill. In this work, a detailed combustion profile of fecal solid waste was measured using micro-combustion and bomb calorimetery. Sample sets from multiple locations were obtained from both point of source (toilet – India, United States, South Africa) and pit latrine (Kenya). Results include heat release profiles, volatile, char, and ash mass fractions, and the caloric content of volatiles and char. These data allow for the optimization of current thermal processes and advances technologies where thermal remediation is core to processing fecal solid waste.

thermal processing FSM5

Presentation: Pathogen-Free Thermal Treatment

The forthcoming international standard for fecal sludge treatment units, ISO/PC 318 requires technologies to exhibit energy neutrality and satisfaction of pathogen threshold values. Research and development efforts at Biomass Controls focus on compliance with this standard. This involves the development of an energy flow analysis and research into the time-temperature relationships required for complete pathogen inactivation. The results of these efforts have yielded that thermal treatment units should be capable of achieving energy neutrality in steady state using only the energy contained in fecal sludge and that pyrolysis/combustion temperatures are adequate for complete pathogen inactivation.

fecal sludge treatment unites

Presentation: Combustion Analysis of Fecal Matter

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Reinvent the Toilet (RT) program aims to “bring sustainable sanitation solutions to the 2.5 billion people worldwide who don’t have access.” Duke University and partners have developed a modular, on-site waste processing system that seeks to provide safe and reliable treatment of all inputs that exceed the metrics set by ISO 30500. Currently, sub-systems are being evaluated and re-engineered to reduce complexity, reduce energy reliance, and develop strategies for productization. To further the development of such transformative technologies, field prototypes have transitioned from the laboratory to field testing sites (Ahmedabad and Coimbatore, India and Durban, South Africa).

on-site waste processing system

Presentation: Tools for Efficient Remote Monitoring

The digital transformation provides an opportunity to more efficiently monitor and regulate faecal sludge management services. To achieve this, software solutions for data collection and analysis need to be developed. The results of a software development process for a thermal faecal sludge treatment technology are presented. The process is presented in three steps: (1) analysis of raw data collected in a cloud database, (2) development of meaningful Key Performance Indicators for monitoring of compliance to standards, safety, and performance, (3) a simple to comprehend and powerful data visualisation for operators, regulators and manufacturers.

sanitation treatment technology

Presentation: Gender Lens for Sanitation Technology Development

Innovators in the water and sanitation sector are focused on closing the sanitation gap in developing countries. The sanitation sector is challenged to deliver improvements that meet the practices and preferences of all genders. This presentation shares survey research with a set of global research and development (R&D) teams that are in the midst of an innovation drive for leap-frog sanitation treatment and resource recovery technologies. Findings suggest a majority of teams incorporated gender into their work, though the incorporation was generally limited in scope and not deep in understanding gender dynamics. Teams designing elements of a user-interface were more likely to incorporate gender disaggregated elements. Waste-processing technology was often assumed to be gender-neutral, not requiring differentiated thinking on how various genders interact with the novel technologies. This work fills a gap in R&D and technology adoption in how to evaluate and foster a gender lens into R&D activities in the international development water and sanitation sector.

sanitation gender lens

Presentation: Evidence for the Integration of Menstrual Hygiene

Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) is a neglected topic in the water and sanitation sector, with waste disposal often absent in most MHM programming. This work illustrates that the integration of private and safe disposal mechanisms for menstrual absorbents into sanitation facilities is valued. It brings many co-benefits in health and dignity, and safeguards community environmental health and protects toilet facilities. The integration of MHM, including waste management into WASH investments furthers SDG goals for access, empowerment, dignity and public environmental health.

Menstrual Hygiene Management

Jeff Wong, FSM5: Poster Sessions, Interactive Sessions

Leveraging IoT Technology for Building Smart Sanitation Solutions | Ballroom

The benefits of data capture are clear, as data answers critical questions on user interactions with sanitation products and solutions: how is our equipment being used? When is it being used? Who is using it? What is the condition of our equipment? Is it operating as expected? New and exciting sensor technology is constantly appearing. Sensors for civil engineering, pollution, lighting, medical data, and security to name a few have become universally available. However sensors are only valuable if the data they capture is made available and can produce useful information upon which decisions are made.

smart sanitation

Biomass Controls