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Biomass as fuel

Discussion in 'Alternative Energy' started by grainstovesman, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    Would any one care to discuss using waste coffe grounds as fuel for a pellet stove ?

    I have been producing this fuel for a year now and I feel I should share the knowledge ..
     
  2. 3v0

    3v0 Coop Build Coordinator Forum Supporter

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    Maybe you could get it started by telling us how you make it and what you learned.
     
  3. timsvb

    timsvb New Member

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    I'm a coffee fiend.I just put the grounds in the bin.Thought once of givin them to the chooks,but didn't want to hype them up and didn't think they'd be any good for the garden either. I 'd be interested to know the process.
     
  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. 3v0

    3v0 Coop Build Coordinator Forum Supporter

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    I was just informed by she who must be obeyed that you can add them to your compost. Excellent for the garden.
     
  6. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    The company I work for has been manufacturing and selling Grain fueled stoves for heating for the last 19 years ... Let me explain,,, I am in Canada, where grain is an acceptable fuel to burn. Corn, Wheat and Rye are generally the fuels we use and the people who use our products are generally farmers.

    I like a few of you, I like my coffee and realized that I throw away a lot of grounds over time. I know of an individual in Ottawa who invented a fire log made of wax and coffee grounds that is now sold under the name Java Log ... suggest you Google it ..the story is fascinating.

    Any way I developed a mix which is proprietary ( patents are pending ) so I cant say much .... the secret is how to produce the pellet that we use in our stoves and other pellet stoves. That is a small machine that you put the mix in and out comes pellets. they the go through a process of drying and yielding a hard pellet that produces about 10,500 btu per pound. Compared to Corn which is 7,500 btu per pound and wood pellets that are generally 8,000.

    The problem is that we could gather up all the coffee grounds from resturants and coffe shops but the transportation to a central processing plant would be a killer, so I have another Idea .... the machine I have made costs less than 1,500.00 to make and would produce abot 1/2 ton in 5 hours. It's still a bit manual at this stage.. Imagine a network of small garage sized plants run by 1 individual who is responsible for picking up the grounds and making the pellets for local consumption.

    Now Canada consumes 65 % of the coffee imported into North America. Canada is only 1/10 the size of the U.S. that means Canadians drink on average 3.5 cups of coffee a day ,,every man woman and child.

    When we get the patent through, we will need to set up the individuals .. any one interested ?
     
  7. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Interesting! 3.5 cups per day per person. That does explain a lot from our American perspective! :D

    I would be interested. Who's building your processor machines? I do custom fabrication work and would be interested in more information about the whole idea.
    The down side is there are not a lot of pellet stoves around here.
    The locals figured out a simple fireplace is about 1/4 the purchase cost of a pellet stove and wood is still free for the asking if you know where to ask.
    Less efficient and a little more work but far cheaper!

    I build custom multi fuel boilers that can burn anything combustible. Full digital controls and everything.
    I am always curious about other people doing different alternative heating methods myself.:)
     
  8. BrownOut

    BrownOut Banned

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    Why? How far is processing from the resturants?

    EDIT: while you're at the resturants, get their used cooking oil to power your trucks. :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2009
  9. Leftyretro

    Leftyretro New Member

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    "Interesting! 3.5 cups per day per person. That does explain a lot from our American perspective! "

    Doesn't suprize me one bit, have you ever tried drinking their beer. :p

    Lefty
     
  10. killivolt

    killivolt Well-Known Member

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    Recently in the News I saw a Company that takes garbage dumps - they seal it with a cover and humidify it watching a specific dew point level the cover is plastic sheet material and they weigh it all down on top with old tires. Before they do this they build a recovery center in the middle and pipe it out. Apparently it makes a lot of methane.

    Quote:

    Marturano estimates the 1-E landfill can keep collecting methane for 20 more years or so. He said the energy produced by the four landfills in the Meadowlands district powers about 25,000 homes.

    The Edgeboro landfill in East Brunswick, operated by the Middlesex County Utilities Authority, has been collecting methane since 2001 and currently generates about 13 megawatts of electricity, enough for about 13,000 homes for a year, according to Public Service Electric and Gas, the state's largest utility.

    The Middlesex County agency uses the electricity generated by the Edgeboro landfill's methane to power the county's wastewater treatment plant in Sayreville. Last year, that saved the authority about $3 million, according to executive director Rich Fitamant.

    Methane gas is produced by micro-organisms that feed on organic matter in trash. The bacteria are not picky eaters and have adapted to feasting on wood, cardboard or plastic if food waste isn't available.

    "It's evolution on a fast track," Marturano said.



    kv:)
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2009
  11. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    Yes we do the methane thing here ... the only problem with that is that Methane is a green house gas .. Cows do it too ... my approach is carbon neutral .. by burning it before it gets a chance to rot and produce methane and other gasses ... you burn it and release the Co and Co2 , o2 plus small amounts of other gasses ... they get recycled by the plants that do the photosynthisis thing .. Remember the object is to be carbon neutral and produce no green house gasses !
     
  12. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I thought the biomass methane production method was considered green. Its just taking a process that will happen regardless of our actions and putting it to use.

    As far as the human garbage dump site methane productions world wide, they dont even add up to a fraction of a percent as to what nature makes during the normal decay of plant and animal matter world wide in a years time.
     
  13. BrownOut

    BrownOut Banned

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    The methane argument never made any sense to me either. It's just re-cycled CO2 that organic material assimilated from the atmosphere anyway?! Same for the pellets. I think as both being 'green.'
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2009
  14. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I my opinion the more I read about green technology, global warming and its supposed causes, and vehicle emissions systems the more I think the people in charge are total morons that have no idea of how chemistry, physics, biology and ecological systems work!:mad:
    Non of their facts they spout and ram down the publics throats add up or even check out as being even remotely true, conformable or even realistically plausible.:mad:
    The over unity nutters at least back some of there research and concepts up with plausible science and physics.;)

    Why would any one pay $2000 - $3000 for a pellet stove that burns pellets made of compressed saw dust that costs up wards of $100 a ton? :confused:

    I have no problem with the coffee grounds idea. That to me is a smart way to use a waste product efficiently.:)

    But grinding up wood then gluing it back together then burning it, whats the gain or even the point? For far far less you can get a good chain saw and buy a fire place that burns wood strait like in the old days and you get your heat for near nothing.
     
  15. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    Yeah ! I agree ..I am not a supporter of Wood Pellet fuel for many reasons... Here in Ontario last year there was a shortage and people that paid good money for a stove could not use it ... they were pissed !
    Pelleting waste like coffee grounds, corn Stover ..that's the left overs from corn ..leaves, stems and such plus other agricultural waste .. make good fuel.
    Remember that cutting wood ,, seasoning, storing and such are a lot of work .. pellet stoves are an automation situation....

    We have to get off the fossil fuel roller coaster !
     
  16. BrownOut

    BrownOut Banned

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    I disagree! The evidence and scientific research supporting global warming is real. We are reaching a crises and need to be taking steps to mitigate the problem now. I hope that alternate/clean/green.... whatever you want to call it, becomes our energy direction in the future.

    Heck, even G W Bush had to admit that in the end.
     
  17. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    Brown Out ... may bee I misunderstood you .. you DISAGREE with TCMTECK ?

    I think he is agreeing with the issue of global warming ..just that there is so much crap being floated that the common man gets conflicting info ... we should all go back to school and be re-taught about the carbon cycle.... burning fossil fuel not acceptable !
     
  18. smanches

    smanches New Member

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    $100 a ton? Try $400 a ton in the pacific northwest. The lack of new construction has killed the timber industry which is killing the pellet industry. Funny how things are connected that way.

    Wood pellets are made from waste just like other pellets. It only makes sense to use them in an area where timber is a big industry, like here in Oregon. And when the selfish timber industry makes it almost impossible (or at the very least not economical) to cut your own wood, there are few choices left.

    The latest biomass project they want to do around here is scraping the forest floors of raw biomass and burning it. It's so ridiculous it's unbelievable. The amount of damage that would do to the biosphere would be... well... unbelievable. EDIT: I don't mean the burning part of it, but the scraping of the forest floor.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2009
  19. BrownOut

    BrownOut Banned

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    Heh! Maybe I didn't understand his post. I re-read it, and still come away thinking the same thing. Please understand that I live in Alabama, you know, hillbilly country. I have the "global warming is a hoax" argument on nearly a daily bases. :)
     
  20. grainstovesman

    grainstovesman New Member

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    OK Let me put it this way ... don't be afraid of burning ... I mean burning ... wood, biomass or whatever .. as long as it started life as a plant and lived in our lifetime it's ok ... yes it's ok ...
    It's when you load up the atmosphere with all the carbon of millions of years ago that it goes wrong ... it is wrong to burn fossil biomass or fossil fuels .. that stuff should not be burned ... it is the cause ..of all this crap .. we have to find a way to persuade people of that and as long as our economy is based on the black gold we don't have much chance !
     
  21. tcmtech

    tcmtech Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Thats the part I understand and agree with on the fuel issue. I dont care for the burning of locked carbon fuel sources to any great degree. I totally agree with the short time line method of using whats on the ground all ready.
    If it grew and is part of a continual regrowth cycle its carbon neutral. IF its been buried or sequestered for more than a few centuries we should leave it alone under most circumstances.
    World wide bio mass carbon cycles are easy to tap into and have no real net effect on the climate.
    Should I till under a field and let it decay back into the soil or should I harvest everything above the ground and then process it and get every bit of use and energy out of it before returning the ashes to the field?
    Either way the net energy gets returned to the cycle. I just borrowed some of it for my needs.

    I am planning to do some more alternative fuel testing this winter with my boiler systems. This year I am going to cut and square bail large brush and weed patches we have around the farm and try using them as winter heating fuel sources.
    We cut them down with the rotary mower every year to cleanup the pastures and to keep them from spreading any way so I figure why not bail it, burn it and get something useful from it!

    Seriously $400 a ton! Tell me what size of pellets you want and I will build a processing machine to make bio pellets out of anything that grows and I will deliver in person for far less than that!
    If you want to set up a pellet manufacturing and distribution system with grainstoveman I would gladly do it! We have so much free for the taking bio material in our state its sick!
     

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