Brazilian Biogas Producer Starts RNG for Vehicle Fuel

| Brazil: Rio de Janeiro | Source: Brasil Energia Online via ABEGÁS
Biomethane for vehicles in Brazil

Biomethane for vehicles (image: ABiogás)

GEO Energética, a 100% Brazilian company that produces biogas from agroindustrial waste, has put into operation a biogas purification unit for the production of biomethane for use as a vehicular fuel. The unit is located in its biogas plant, installed since 2012, at the sugar and alcohol plant of Coopcana, Tamboara (PR).

With an investment of R$ 4 million (USD 1.05 million), the unit has the capacity to generate 140 Nm³ of biomethane per hour, which represents approximately 1,800 Nm³ / day of the fuel, enough to supply 90 vehicles per day.

In the initial phase, biomethane will be tested on vehicles, trucks and tractors, according to Karina Lassner, director of Acesa Bioenergia, a partner in the project. The latest test, for example, this week was with a Audi A5 Sportback g-tron, the German automaker’s third model that allows customers to choose their fuels with CNG, biomethane or gasoline.

Although it is a unit made for the purpose of learning the production, the daily generation may also be transported by truck to fuel the region, as well as some vehicles from the sugar and alcohol mill.

The biggest possibility, however, must be to increase the production of biomethane at the site, which can reach 50 thousand m³ per day. To this end, in addition to the two current vertical biodigesters, two more vertical biodigesters will be added in 2019.


There is already declared interest in Coopcana (Agricultural Cooperativa Regional de Productores de Canas), which processes 4 million tons of sugarcane a year, to have biomethane available in the future to replace the two million liters per month of diesel consumed in its 110 trucks (own and outsourced), 40 harvesters, 140 tractors, 15 loaders, three graders and three hydraulic excavators.

In addition to the cost issue, the plant’s interest in improving its carbon footprint is explained by the possibility of increasing its carbon emission credits (CBIos), financial assets that will be created by Renovabio (the new national biofuel policy) which is scheduled to commence in 2020.

“Today the biomethane plant consumes less than 10% of the biogas produced, around 2400 Nm³, but even so, it amounts to 1600 liters of diesel equivalent per day,” recalls Gardemann. According to him, even without being an expressive volume, the unit does not need subsidy and pays its way by generating a biofuel cheaper than diesel. So far GEO Energética has invested approximately R $ 50 million in the biogas plant.

The biomethane plant raises the percentage of methane from 60% to 96%, and uses pressure-varying adsorption technology (PSA) technology from Germany’s Carbotek. The unit is in the container, which can be shifted to another location, and connects by pipeline with the biogas produced by GEO Energética.

Source: Brasil Energia Online

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