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To: redgolum
Where do they get the heat from?

Ok, you need something to burn to start the process. This will later be replaced with the product, but to get started you need a fuel source.

We start by removing the water. Traditionally, this was done in a very inefficent manner, such that the total efficiency of removing the water took more energy than the product produced. Now, we use water to our advantage. Start by sealing the container, and heating it to ~400 F, and about 350psi. This breaks down the carbon strings a bit. Now, remove the pressure and you will remove most of the water - which we reclaim for heating the next batch.

This hot mixture (now minus the water content) is heated to about 600 F, under about 400 psi (much lower pressure/temp ratio, as the water is gone). Let sit for about 2 hours. This really breaks down the hydrocarbon stings. By the way, this is EXACTLY how we make gasoline and ligher petrolium oils.

In short, we have done in a matter of hours what mother nature takes millions of years to do. Pressure and temperature transform a forest into coal, dinosaurs into oil. We just sped the process up a few billion-fold.

37 posted on 04/13/2004 10:47:24 AM PDT by Hodar (With Rights, comes Responsibilities. Don't assume one, without assuming the other.)
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To: Hodar
I'm curious about what materials this process works on.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we could easily grow (and harvest and convert to oil) literally millions of tons of cottonwood trees, which have no economic value at all, otherwise.
50 posted on 04/13/2004 10:58:51 AM PDT by djf
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To: Hodar
I guess my concern is that the amount of energy needed to process the manure is more than it produces.

I am leaving the ethanol industry ( on the road to much with all the plants being built!) and I know some of the problems in the renewable energy field.

If this process is manageable on a large scale and if the energy efficiency is right, than I foresee this taking off rather quickly!

To be honest, I would love to talk with some one with an engineering background on this! Might be a career opportunity if my new job doesn't work out!
101 posted on 04/13/2004 12:21:18 PM PDT by redgolum
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To: Hodar; SierraWasp
Start by sealing the container, and heating it to ~400 F

Let's see, ignoring the cost of the heating equipment and the ASME pressure vessel, it would take roughly 106 BTUs of heat to heat up a ton of pig shit to 400F and an equal amount to heat up the pressure vessel. It would probably take another million or four to get it up to 600F and hold it there for long enough for the reaction to take place.

So just to heat up 2000# of the mess would cost from $50 to $125 in fuel costs alone. Fuel cost calculator

How much oil did you say a ton of pig shit would make?

(The above analysis ignores the labor costs of the thousands of pig shit shovelers.)

146 posted on 04/13/2004 1:44:47 PM PDT by snopercod (When the people are ready, a master will appear.)
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