(158b) Process Hazard Considerations for Utilization of Renewable Methane from Biogas | AIChE

(158b) Process Hazard Considerations for Utilization of Renewable Methane from Biogas


Hietala, D., Exponent, Inc.
Sulmonetti, T., Exponent
Stern, M., Exponent
Biogas production is a growing sector in the global alternative energy landscape. Biogas is a mixture of carbon dioxide and hydrocarbons (primarily methane) that is generated from the biological breakdown of organic material. This mixture can be separated and upgraded to produce renewable methane with lower greenhouse gas emissions and cumulative energy demand than natural gas generated from fossil fuels. Biogas generation also typically provides an additional benefit of utilizing a waste stream as a feedstock. As industries and economies continue to produce organic waste, biogas and biomethane generation represents a large opportunity for production of sustainable fuels. As a result, biogas generation and production of renewable methane is an attractive technology for industries with an aim to reduce their impact on the environment and meet sustainability goals. However, production of biogas presents its own set of hazards and challenges that must be identified, analyzed, and mitigated. The paper will address the hazards (and how to manage the hazards) that a facility encounters when developing a project aimed to utilize renewable methane through biogas generation. Topics will include the impact of feedstock variability, biogas and methane quality, toxic and corrosive byproducts, fire and explosion hazards, water and effluent handling, and equipment reliability. The paper will also discuss considerations important for onsite generation and those relevant to procuring renewable methane from a third-party.


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