The benefits of biogas upgrading: interview with Bjarne Larsen, Service & Warranty Manager with Airco

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Biogas facilities have been converting farmyard waste into valuable methane for decades. However, a new technology can make the process much more environmentally-friendly, states Bjarne Larsen in a one-on-one interview with CCW.

David Sear: Mr Larsen, to start with, what is biogas?

Bjarne Larsen is Service & Warranty Manager with Airco

Bjarne Larsen: To give a very common example, biogas – which is essentially methane – can be produced from farmyard waste. That biogas can then be used as a valuable energy source. The technology is already very well established.

So what is biogas upgrading?

Standard biogas facilities release considerable quantities of carbon dioxide. Our next-generation water- and amine-based biogas upgraders enable biogas plants to be operated more efficiently and with the option of converting the biogas stream not only into natural gas grid specification methane but also into high-value products such as liquid biomethane and biogenic-carbon dioxide.

How easy is it to set up a biogas upgrader?

Our processes are very robust and also straightforward to engineer and build. All that is required is a well-chosen location in terms of logistics. By that I mean the facility needs to be within easy reach of the incoming farmyard waste as well as conveniently close to the gas network.

How efficient is the upgrading process?

With a capture rate of 99.9%, our amine biogas upgraders ensures that your plant can produce the highest quality biomethane possible.

What happens to the carbon dioxide?

Traditionally the captured carbon dioxide has been viewed as a potential liability, but with the current investments in Power-to-X technologies, there will be a substantial need for CO2 from green sources such as biogas.

What types of equipment would be found in your biogas upgrader facility?

Pretty much all the mechanical equipment you would expect, so compressors, pumps, heat exchangers, valves, etc. Our processes normally rely on standardized items although some customization may be required depending on the specific application. For example, the pressure and temperature in the system, any impurities, etc.

And what is your role?

I am a Service & Warranty Manager, so am on-hand should the client experience any difficulties. That can involve site visits but today much can be achieved remotely. As an initial step we analyse the trend curves to try and identify the root cause of an unexpected behaviour. This is not rocket science, just a step by step methodical approach.

Sounds like you enjoy your work…

Absolutely! My colleagues and I find it rewarding to help our customers to achieve their dreams and let’s be honest – the carbon capture industry is a veritable paradise for a service engineer.

Case history: Biogas upgrading at Kliplev, Denmark

The Kliplev facility is delivering 48 mio. Nm3 biomethane directly to the gas grid

Sustainable Bio Solutions (SBS) is the company behind the one of the world’s largest biogas plants located in Kliplev, Denmark, with Bigadan as the total contractor. Airco Process Technology was appointed as supplier of the upgrading plant.

At the ambitious project in southern Denmark, the site is delivering biomethane to the grid. The biomass is delivered from numerous surrounding farms, which is paramount for filling the 12 huge AD tanks.

Airco handed over the project in 2022, and thereafter the Airco service department has taken over to ensure any unplanned stoppages and other issues that might occur, are solved instantly 24/7. Uptime is the decisive factor as SBS is paid for every Nm3 delivered to the grid – at the right biomethane quality.

The new facility is delivering 48 mio. Nm3 biomethane directly to the gas grid, biogas that occurs from 1 Mio. tons of digested manure and bedding yearly. Thereby carbon emissions are reduced by more than 100.000 tons annually. The degassed manure is sent back to the farmers with improved fertilizer value.

Carbon Capture Editorial Team
Carbon Capture Editorial Team
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