Biogas and Its Uses

Introduction- In the early 20th century many daily necessities such as energy, food, fodder, fertiliser and fibers were derived from agricultural biomass. As the 20th and 21st century progressed, however, the traditional role of agriculture in energy supply diminished. Petrol and diesel driven vehicles has to be replaced. However, with the progressive depletion of fossil fuels and the requirement for sustainable renewable energy, biomass is again an important raw material. Biomass may be converted to energy, by producing – among others – biogas.

Biomass is composed of two words ‘Bio’ and ‘mass’ ‘Bio’ means life and ‘mass’ means material. In other words, the material contained in the bodies of living organism (plants and animals) is said to be biomass or plant matter, created by process of photosynthesis is called biomass.

Biogas refers to a mixture of different gases produced by the breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen. Biogas can be produced from raw materials such as manure, municipal waste, plant material, sewage, green waste or food waste.

Biogas Composition :-

S.No Particulars Composition %
1 Methane (CH₄) 65-75%
2 Carbon dioxide (CO₂) 20-30%
3 Hydrogen (H₂) 5-10%
4 Nitrogen (N₂) 2-6%
5 Hydrogen Sulphide (H₂S) 0-1%

Uses of Biogas :-
  • It helps in rural sanitation.
  • It helps in eliminating drudgery of woman.
  • It helps in reducing deforestation.
  • It helps in providing good quality manure.
  • It helps in providing good quality manure.

Requirements of Anaerobic Digestion :-
pH-Value: Suitable condition for fermentation and normal gas production is when pH of the slurry is in between 6 to 7.5.
Temperature: It is important to keep digestion temperature not lower than 10°C, the higher the temperature the better gas production.(35-38°C)
Ratio of cattle dung and water: Proper mixture ratio is 4:5 cattle dung and water or 1:1.
Pressure: A minimum pressure of 1.2 × 10⁵ Pa is considered ideal for proper functioning of the plant.
Carbon to Nitrogen ratio: The favourable C:N ratio for anaerobic digestion is 30:1.

Ms. Surbhi Suman, Assistant Professor, School of Agricultural Science,, Career Point University, Kota

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