Energy de-carbonisation and nutrient recovery

SLURRES PILOT will demonstrate a manure-to-energy system that can exploit the national slurry resource for renewable energy and improved nutrient recycling.

SLURRES PILOT is a collaboration between tcbb RESOURCE, the University of Limerick and Premier Green Energy Operations Ltd, with Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) funding from its Research, Development and Demonstration Funding Programme.

SLURRES PILOT builds on previous research to engineer a low-cost slurry management prototype to de-water and treat slurry solids and treat the liquor residues. It aims to mobilise the solids for use as an energy feedstock and sufficiently clarify liquors to enable ammonia removal and recycling. It will evaluate energy recovery via pyrolysis, combustion and/or anaerobic digestion. It will also liaise with other ongoing investigations into technology to improve nutrient recovery for recycling.

Energy de-carbonisation and nutrient recovery

Energy de-carbonisation is a cornerstone of the Energy White Paper*, NREAP** and National Mitigation Plan, each of which targets reductions in greenhouse gases emissions by displacing fossil-fuels with renewable alternatives. 

SLURRES PILOT contributes to Ireland’s energy decarbonisation objectives by demonstrating viable techniques to aggregate/mobilise Ireland’s large slurry supply for renewable energy. Pyrolysis is a thermal technology that applies heat in the absence of oxygen to generate a syngas that can be used in boilers or CHP engines, thus contributing towards RES H and/or RES E objectives. Alternatively, slurry solids may be conditioned as a solid fuel that can be readily combusted or pre-treated to improve renewable biogas generation from anaerobic digestion.

The project contributes to energy efficiency by reducing slurry transport requirements, leading to reductions in transport emissions. It reduces agricultural emissions by improving manure management, targeting improved recycling of nutrients in forms that reduce nitrogen losses to fugitive atmospheric emissions and runoff, thereby improving water quality, and facilitating displacement of GHG- intensive manufactured fertilisers with organic alternatives.

The slurry-to-energy system deploys low-cost separation equipment on farms and higher-tech energy recovery technology in centralised locations, thereby facilitating scale while controlling infrastructure costs to minimise unit-cost of energy. 

Applications of the technology will be designed for moderately-scaled industrial or community-based deployments that are relevant to Ireland. It will emphasise energy recovery from an indigenous agricultural resource, improving energy security and engaging the large agricultural community as energy citizens.

Collaboration and demonstration

tcbb RESOURCE is a key partner in SLURRES PILOT. SLURRES PILOT builds on the fundamental research and report resulting from the initial SLURRES project. SLURRES ‘fundamental’ was also SEAI-funded under its Research, Development & Demonstration Funding Programme. 

In SLURRES PILOT, tcbb RESOURCE collaborates with its project partners, the University of Limerick and Premier Green Energy Operations Limited.

Information on SLURRES 'fundamental' is available on this website's SLURRES page.

*Ireland’s Transition to a Low Carbon Energy Future 2015 – 2030, published 2015
**National Renewable Energy Action Plan - a requirement for all European Union member states under Article 4 of Directive 2009/28/EC on renewable energy