Biomass Energy Developments in Jordan

The location of Municipality of Greater Amman ...
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Renewable energy systems have been used in Jordan since early 1970s. Infact, Jordan has been a pioneer in renewable energy promotion in the Middle East with its first wind power pilot project in Al-Ibrahemiya as early as 1988. Systematic monitoring of the technological developments and implementation/execution of demonstration and pilot projects has been the hallmark of Jordan’s foray into clean energy sector.

Municipal solid wastes represent the best source of biomass in Jordan. In terms of quantity per capita and constituents, the waste generated in Jordan is comparable to most semi-industrialized nations. The per capita of waste generated in Jordan is about 0.9 kg/day. The total generation of municipal waste in Jordan is estimated at 1.84 million tons per year. The main resources of organic waste in Jordan that can be potentially used to produce biogas are summarized as follows:

  • Municipal waste from big cities
  • Organic wastes from slaughterhouse, vegetable market, hotels and restaurants.
  • Organic waste from agro-industries
  • Animal manure, mainly from cows and chickens.
  • Sewage sludge and septic.
  • Olive mills.
  • Organic industrial waste

According to a study conducted by the Greater Amman Municipality, around 1.5 million tonnes of organic waste was generated in Jordan in 2009. In addition, an annual amount of 1.83 million cubic meter of septic and sewage sludge from treatment of 44 million cubic meter of sewage water is generated in greater Amman area. The potential annual sewage sludge and septic generated in Amman can be estimated at 85,000 tons of dry matter.

The Government of Jordan, in collaboration with UNDP, GEF and the Danish Government, established 1MW Biomethanation plant at Rusaifeh landfill near Amman in 1999.  The Plant has been successfully operating since its commissioning and efforts are underway to increase its capacity to 5MW. Infact, the project has achieved net yearly profit from electricity sale of about US $ 100, 000.  The project consists of a system of twelve landfill gas wells and an anaerobic digestion plant based on 60 tons per day of organic wastes from hotels, restaurants and slaughterhouses in Amman. The successful installation of the biogas project has made it a role model in the entire region and several big cities are striving to replicate the model.

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Use of Ultrasound in Anaerobic Digestion – Industrial Examples

Ultrasound activated sludge disintegration could positively affect sludge anaerobic digestion. Due to sludge disintegration, organic compounds are transferred from the sludge solids into the aqueous phase resulting in an enhanced biodegradability. Therefore disintegration of sewage sludge is a promising method to enhance anaerobic digestion rates and lead to reduce the volume of sludge digesters.

The addition of disintegrated surplus activated sludge and/or foam to the process of sludge anaerobic digestion can lead to markedly better effects of sludge handling at wastewater treatment plants. In the case of disintegrated activated sludge and/or foam addition to the process of anaerobic digestion it is possible to achieve an even twice a higher production of biogas. Here are few examples:

STP Bad Bramstedt, Germany (85,000 PE or 4.49 MGD) First fundamental study on pilot scale by Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg, 3 years, 1997 – 1999 • reduction in digestion time from 20 to 4 days without losses in degradation efficiency • increase in biogas production by a factor of 4 (renewable energy!) • reduction of digested sludge mass of 25%

STP Ahrensburg, Germany (50,000 PE or 2.64 MGD) Preliminary test on pilot-scale by Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg, 6 months, 1999 • increase in VS destruction of 20% • increase in biogas production of 20%

STP Bamberg, Germany (230,000 PE or 12.15 MGD) 1) Preliminary full-scale test, 4 months, 2002 2) Full-scale installation since June 2004 • increase in VS destruction of 30% • increase in biogas production of 30% • avoided the construction of a new anaerobic digester (3,000 m?? vol.)

STP Freising, Germany (130,000 PE or 6.87 MGD) Fundamental full-scale study by University of Armed Forces, Munich, 4 months, 2003 • increase in biogas production of 15% • improved sludge dewatering of 10%

STP Meldorf, Germany (20,000 PE or 1.06 MGD) ( BNR Oxidation Ditch plant ) 1) Preliminary full-scale test, 3 months, 2004 2) Full-scale installation since December 2004 • increase in VS destruction of 25% • increase in biogas production of 25% • no foam or filamentous organisms present in the anaerobic sludge digester

STP Ergolz 2, Switzerland (65,000 PE or 3.43 MGD) Full-scale test, 3 months, 2004 • increase in VS destruction of 15% • increase in biogas production of 25%

STP Beverungen, Germany (50,000 PE or 2.64 MGD) Full-scale test, 3 months, 2004/2005 • increase in VS destruction of 25% • increase in biogas production of 25%

STP Au, Illertissen/Ulm, Germany (70,000 PE or 3.70 MGD) Full-scale test, 3 months, 2004/2005 • increase in VS destruction of 15% • increase in biogas production of 25%

STP Zeist, Netherlands (75,000 PE or 3.96 MGD) Full-scale installation since May 2005 • increase in VS destruction of 25% • increase in biogas production of 25%

STP Kleinsteinbach, Germany (40,000 PE or 2.11 MGD) Full-scale installation since July 2006 • increase in VS destruction of 25% • increase in biogas production of 25%