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University Professor says he can extract Oil from Pig Manure

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posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:27 PM
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This technology has been around for a while but I have not seen any mention of it on ATS; so thought I would post it for others to see. Apparently an Illinois Professor has developed a new process to extract oil from Pig Dung. Sounds odd, but true never the less. The ironic part of this is that it could produce millions of gallons a year and the extraction rate is 75 percent of what is collected.. Up until now they have only worked on a lab scale but not they are moving into field testing and hopefully it will work. Zhang is predicting 3.6 gallons of crude oil a day out of each pig. Now multiply that by the number of pigs in the US which is around 100 million times 3.6 gallons a day per pig.

Now that is a sizeable amount of oil.




UI researcher makes crude oil from pig manure

Zhang's breakthrough wasn't that he and fellow researchers had become excrement alchemists; in about 1998, he figured out how to convert some of a pig's byproduct to an energy source. Turning garbage into natural gas, cow manure into fuel for power plants, and even fast-food grease into auto fuel are other examples of recent advances in the sub-field of icky-but-renewable energy.

Zhang's big breakthrough is that he's designed a more efficient process: a continuous reactor. Instead of converting hog waste one batch at a time, Zhang's lab, which is funded in part by the Illinois Pork Producers Association, has developed a method to feed waste continuously into a reactor, which is essentially an industrial-strength pressurized oven. And, Zhang boasts, "We don't even need pre-drying."

Chemically, pig dung isn't as different from oil as one might think. In Zhang's reactor, a process known as thermochemical conversion partially breaks down hydrocarbon molecules that make up most of the excrement, and voila: porky petrol.

[....]

Now the plan is to move from the lab to a full-sized pilot reactor on a farm somewhere Downstate. Zhang predicts the process could get 3.6 gallons of crude oil a day out of each pig. Illinois brings some 7.2 million hogs to market each year and the nationwide industry is about 100-million hogs strong.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.





[edit on 5/10/2006 by shots]




posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:31 PM
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I like it. I actually have heard of this type of Biofuel before, but I've heard that there are logistical problems in the implementation. I'm sure that's just Economist Speak for "It's more hassle then they think it's worth," (Read: Infrastruction setup would be too costly when we already have a Crude Oil infrastructure up and running).

I wonder how clean this Oil is though and how usefull it is for refining into Plastics and such. What about the Methane? Is that captured as well?

EDIT: Now that I think about it, the cleanliness is a moot issue as it could potentially be a near net-zero emissive fuel, like Biodiesel from Corn or Sugarcane.

[edit on 10-5-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:37 PM
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Originally posted by sardion2000
I like it. I actually have heard of this type of Biofuel before, but I've heard that there are logistical problems in the implementation. I'm sure that's just Economist Speak for "It's more hassle then they think it's worth," (Read: Infrastruction setup would be too costly when we already have a Crude Oil infrastructure up and running).

I wonder how clean this Oil is though and how usefull it is for refining into Plastics and such. What about the Methane? Is that captured as well?



Yes there is mention of the hassle in one of the articles. Apparently this only became cost effective at this time because of the rising price of oil. As for the methane I have no idea, but the news yesterday (local that is) mentioned it burns hotter then diesel and ethanol, but I would take that would a grain of salt until we learn more about the process. You know how the media is at times some reporters that favor the farmers blow things out of proportion. Our local station just happens to be one those that is why I mentioned it.



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:39 PM
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Millions of gallons a year isn't going to get us far. Trillions of gallons, then we might have something.



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:46 PM
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Originally posted by Omniscient
Millions of gallons a year isn't going to get us far. Trillions of gallons, then we might have something.


Utah and Colorado are working on that. They claim there is the worlds largest oil reserve in the world in Oil Shale.



Hidden 1,000 feet beneath the surface of the Rocky Mountains lies the largest untapped oil reserve in the world - more than 2 TRILLION barrels. On August 8, 2005 President Bush mandated its extraction. Three companies have been chosen to lead the way. Test drilling has already begun
Rense.com


More info here

BLM.gov

Addition sources furnished because some question using Rense as a source.



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 08:51 PM
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Originally posted by shots
The ironic part of this is that it could produce millions of gallons a year and the extraction rate is 75 percent of what is collected..


Now if he could create oil from bull..... that really would be ironic



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 09:01 PM
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Originally posted by Omniscient
Millions of gallons a year isn't going to get us far. Trillions of gallons, then we might have something.


It's a start.

Besides, 3.6 gallons/day/pig x 100,000,000= lots, or for the mathmaticians, 360 million gallons/day.

That is 131,400,000,000 gallons/year.

Now, a "barrel" of oil is 35 gallons, ergo, the pigs could produce 3,754,285,714 barrels a year.

At today's prices, say $65/barrel, that is $244,028,571,428 a year in potential earnings.

Obviously, the price will fall due to an increased supply, but even if they dropped back to a modest $35/barrel, that is still $131,399,999,990 in potential revenue.

Then you could just increase supply, if needed, by breeding more pigs, instead of invading places.

EDIT: For comparison, Saudi Arabia produces 3,785,050,000 barrel/year in crude, so roughly the same as all your pigs.

Seems to me to be a viable solution.....If it works.

[edit on 10/5/06 by stumason]



posted on May, 10 2006 @ 09:03 PM
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Originally posted by Omniscient
Millions of gallons a year isn't going to get us far. Trillions of gallons, then we might have something.


That's not entirely the point. Here are the points that I think are relevant.

1. Any little bit helps.

2. It will be taking care of a significant waste problem.

3. There is a lot of Pig crap in the world and I believe that such a system would be able to be extended to other species of animal waste as well.

Remember this, there will not be one true replacement for oil for a long time to come, we are going to have to think locally when the time of the Oil peak really starts to kick us in the ass.



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