Morrisville State CollegeDepartment of Agricultural Sciences

Anaerobic Digester

Digester's Construction Slideshow (PDF)
Digester's Operation Slideshow (PDF)

NYSERDA's 6th Innovations in Agriculture Poster
NYSERDA's 7th Innovations in Agriculture Poster

Sampling, Testing, & Evaluation Plan (STEP) - Draft

  Anaerobic digestion can minimize odor, generate biogas, and allow more effective nutrient use by crops. To realize the potential energy, environmental, and cost saving benefits of anaerobic digestion, farmers need information to evaluate the energy, labor, land, and equipment costs.

The anaerobic digester project at Morrisville State College involves the design and construction of a hardtop plug-flow digester. The digester will biologically treat dairy manure and other organic waste generated on campus to produce a stable effluent with improved physical, chemical, and biological characteristics. In the system, biogas (about 60% methane) will be produced, captured, and combusted to generate heat and power using a 50kW engine generator set. A boiler that runs on either biogas or propane will also be used to heat water during the startup phase of the system and anytime the engine generator set is not running.

The methane digester system at Morrisville State College is sized to treat manure from over 350 milking cows and generate about 300,000 kWh per year from the recovered biogas. The project is being funded by NYSERDA and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, with additional support through U.S. Representative John McHugh, and from the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Office in Golden, Colorado. Construction on the project started in August 2005 and is expected to be completed in August 2006. The system will be started soon thereafter.

The digester project at Morrisville State College will generate data on the effectiveness of an internal combustion engine for converting biogas to energy; will track and evaluate project data, costs, and benefits; and will use the digester system in Morrisville State College’s academic programs to transfer information to others considering anaerobic digestion systems.

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Department web site designed and maintained by Dr. Walid Shayya.  Last modified: August 20, 2010.