After identifying a number of opportunities in the project, Renewable Heat UK started introducing new elements to the existing system, with the support of Wilo’s products. Nine energy saving pumps – including Wilo Yonos-MAXO and Wilo Stratos models – have been included in the newly expanded system.
The new anaerobic digestion system offers a number of benefits that are making a huge difference to the farm. Since its introduction, all organic matter produced on the farm – such as old feed, bedding, hedge clippings or cow muck – can go directly into the digester.
Methane, which is drawn from the top of the system, is used to fire an engine generator that creates 250mW of electricity. 10% of this is used to power all the farm’s required electronics, whilst the remaining 90% goes to the grid – theoretically, the system produces enough electricity to supply a small village.
With no radiator, its engine directly heats a large header tank to dissipate the heat; Wilo pumps then work to pump all water produced around the site to distribute the heat evenly across the farm.
The digestion plant’s waste product – low methane slurry – can be spread on the fields, benefitting from an 80% reduction in smell as a result of the anaerobic process. Following digestion, the fertiliser activates quickly on the fields; unlike other products, it does not have to lie for some time before the assimilation process starts.
The heat generated by the system’s engine sees the drinking water for the cows heated to 30 degrees C, which has resulted in an 8-10% better milk yield and the cow shed is heated to 20 degrees C resulting in faster growing, healthier calves on the farm as well.
Healthier animals require far less antibiotics, reducing cost and other fears regarding the long term use of such drugs on animals which contribute to food supplies for human consumption.
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