A project on new materials to increase the value of biogas from urban and agro-industrial solid waste

The BIOGAS_RIS3 research project, coordinated by the Aragon Hydrogen Foundation and supported by companies such as Grupo Samca, Enagás, MANN+HUMMEL IBÉRICA or GRHUSA, boosts specialisation in clean and renewable energies and promotes technology transfer to the production system.

The BIOGAS_RIS3A project has reached its halfway point after achieving the first satisfactory results in the development of advanced materials that absorb the impurities of biogas and optimise the methanisation process for subsequent recovery and use as synthetic natural gas. For this purpose, they use hydrogen produced by means of renewable energies.

To achieve this, a test bench has been designed at the Aragon Hydrogen Foundation, with a gas mixing system that aims to simulate different concentrations of the most relevant components that make up real biogas. This bench also includes an analysis system that allows measuring the results obtained with the absorbent materials, which makes it possible characterize them according to their capacity to clean the biogas of pollutants such as hydrogen sulphide (H2S), ammonia (NH3) and siloxanes.

BIOGAS_RIS3A is linked to the lines established in the Aragonese Research and Innovation Strategy for an Intelligent Specialisation (RIS3). Specifically, it is limited to the strategic priority of “Resource efficiency”, within which the strategic line of “Closing water, material and energy cycles” stands out.

The project includes the development of new low-cost materials by the Institute of Materials Science of Aragon (ICMA/ARAID), and the choice of optimal operating parameters in conditions close to industrial ones, carried out by the Institute of Engineering Research of Aragon (I3A). The mentioned materials have multifunctional properties, which will allow maximizing the process of methanisation of the carbon dioxide contained in the biogas, previously subjected to a clening process, using hydrogen of renewable origin and transforming it into a synthetic natural gas easily incorporated into the current natural gas network. Both aspects (cleaning and methanisation) are key to increase the value of biogas coming from waste, with greater integration of renewable enegies. The use of this energy source is widespread in northern European countries, which take advantage of biogas generated from waste to, after a stage of upgrading it to biomethane, supply vehicles that can run on natural gas or inject it into the gas network.

This initiative represents a clear commitment by the autonomous community of Aragon to research, development and innovation in the field of urban solid waste and agro-industrial waste, which will help to achieve the objectives set by the European Union for the transition to a circular economy, with the aim of reducing pollution in our region.

The BIOGAS_RIS3A project, which started in June 2019, is funded by the call for R+D+i projects of the Government of Aragon in priority lines of its Intelligent Specialization Strategy (RIS3) and projects of a multidisciplinary nature, a call to which the Aragon Hydrogen Foundation was able to applyl by having a research group recognized by the regional government. In addition to the Foundation, the partners participating in the project are the Aragonese Agency Foundation for Research and Development (ARAID), the Institute of Materials Science of Aragon (ICMA), the Institute of Engineering Research of Aragon (I3A) of the University of Zaragoza as well as the companies Samca Group (Myta y Gres de Aragón), Enagás, MANN+HUMMEL IBÉRICA and Gestión de Residuos Huesca (GRHUSA).

Posted in Press releases, Projects.