Applied BioEnergy Centre (ABC)

Farmers Fueling The World

PAMI’s Applied BioEnergy Centre undertakes bioenergy research and development projects to produce energy using both liquid and solid feedstocks originating from Canadian Agricultural products.  A major feature of the Centre is the pilot biodigester.

Total multi-year funding of $3.3 million, or about $300,000 per year (Click to read funding announcement) has been made available to research partners and entrepreneurs as leverage towards approved ABC projects in the areas of:

Funded projects are approved by the PAMI ABC Board. Projects approved by the ABC board include:

ABC Facilities

ABC builds on PAMI’s research initiative into anaerobic digestion by investing in a solid state pilot digestion facility. Key features of this facility are:

  • Solid state (DM>15%) feedstock
  • Capacity of 400 tonnes/yr (2 reactors each holding 10-20 tonnes of material/batch)
  • Liquid recirculation (6, 200 gallon tanks + 2, 50 gallon sump tanks)
  • Liquid and gas sample locations
  • Gas collection from solid and liquid streams
  • Inline gas analysis for CO2 and CH4 (tunable diode laser spectrometer),
  • Designated gas monitor for H2S and CH4 concentrations to ensure safety in the operation
  • Gas compression with the ability to add a gas upgrading module to natural gas and/or demonstration of gas utilization via combined heat and power generation.

PAMI makes available to clients a bench scale solid-state digestion system to conduct preliminary investigations into feedstock viability prior to using the pilot plant.

PAMI also operates a pilot liquid digestion facility established in 2005 with funding assistance from Western Economic Diversification, Saskatchewan Industry and Resources, and Natural Resource Canada.

Key features of facility are:

  • 500 Imperial Gallon Anaerobic Biodigester equipped with a boiler connection to set and control the temperature of the system
  • 250 Imperial Gallon Feed Tank with sump pump
  • 50 Imperial Gallon Mix tank with weigh scale & Sump tank with pump
  • 1400 Imperial Gallon Waste tank
  • Spare 1400 Imperial Gallon tank
  • Load cells, computers, flowmeters, and other instrumentation equipment for measuring gas flow, temperature, pressure, and other appropriate parameters
  • Liquid and gas sampling locations
  • Designated gas monitor for H2S and CH4 concentrations to ensure safety in the operation
  • 250 Imperial Gallon Bio-Filter for the vent lines off the Feed, Mix, Sump, and Waste tanks

Testing Capabilities

The Digestion Facilities within the PAMI ABC are capable of undertaking wide-ranging tests, including:

  • Feedstock Recipe Tests involving liquid feedstock mixes containing a maximum of 10% solids or solid feedstock mixes containing greater than 15% solids. Feedstock can include any organic materials such as manure, plant matter, seeds, grains, fats, glycerin, or a combination thereof.
  • Retention Time Performance Tests involve measuring the performance (in terms of gas production rate and CH4 concentration) of a set feedstock when the retention time in the digester is varied. A minimum liquid trial of 15 to 21 days is recommended on a one-tank system with a minimum of 90 days recommended for solid-state trials.
  • Feedstock Introduction Testing: Testing the procedure of feeding the system. How often fresh feedstock is introduced to the system will impact the gas production.
  • Gas Utilization Trials: Clean-up technologies or collection and utilization are options the PAMI ABC can investigate with you.