Welcome to Brian’s Renewable Energies Pages
Keith’s Producer Gas Foundry
Actually there is so much information about wood gas that I don’t know where to begin. Here is a screen shot of a www.youtube.com page about wood gas. Click on the image to go see the video.
I have a lot more research to do on this technology, but from what we saw at Amy’s and Keith’s place on Sunday, wood gas looks very promising, especially for our area where we have a abundance of small diameter wood from our overly thick pine forests which need removing. Turning scrubby pine trees into biomass makes the future look brighter for all of us. I will continue to provide you information on Producer Gas because we will be building our own experimental wood gasifier for the ranch. One aspect of wood gas that is promising is that the by product if worked back into the soil creates one of the few carbon negative energy sources.
See A Carbon-Negative Fuel
Amy welcomes us into their home and shop.
I can’t do justice to the beauty of their home because I was absolute in my myopia looking at the Producer Gas foundry. For instance, right behind these beautiful women, yet somehow not in the photo, are two life-size marble sculptures. Again, sorry for not capturing the elegant work Keith does in stone, maybe next time, I definitely will be returning, these two have it going on out there near San Ysidro and just up the hill from Jona’s and Sara’s new property.
So without further ado.
Wow, right? Or perhaps you need me to tell you what the hell we are looking at in the above photo, smiles.
Well that flame in the middle of the picture is the result of heat being directly applied to Guinea Pig litter. I know, crazy huh? What I feel is insane is that people focus on using Wood Gas for powering their vehicles. Think about what is being done with this fuel here in these artists’ workshop using unrefined wood gas, then compare this to a person attempting to use the fuel to power their cars and drive places … hmmm, no contest. Plus, the fact that humans need to give up our old habits of driving all the time and that wood gas must be purified to run it in an engine, in comparison to using the fuel in its crude form to fire foundries and kilns like Keith and Amy are doing. Well let’s just say, “We’re damn impressed.”
Kevin and Danny listen intently as Keith explains various aspects of his foundry and wood gasification process.
Flames shoot out of a pipe above the foundry. To the left you can see the kiln Keith used for blowing glass before the cost of propane went through the roof.
The way Keith has this gasifier setup, there is a fire built below the biomass gasifier. The fire is separated from the biomass by a thick steel plate and on all sides by a double wall pipe arrangement. In order that the biomass doesn’t burst into flame, air is strictly omitted from the biomass chamber.
Sorry about the shaky shot, what I’m trying to show is the foundry or firebox door closed after the picture above this image shows the door open. Keith has two blowers on the foundry, one is a old-school hand cranked version, the other a squirrel-cage fan.
Interestingly, the charcoal byproduct comes out exactly the same shape as it went in. These are wood chips. They also showed us perfectly formed Guinea Pig litter and a coal black mushroom that went through the processor. Apparently any biomass can be converted to producer gas.
Above the Producer gas plant sits next to the glass heating kiln, not seen in these images is an autoclave or steam producing device.
After Keith explained that adding H2O to the biomass medium results in a hydrogen enriched fuel, we went in the house to take a look at the steam powered axial flux generator built by the guys at OtherPower in Colorado.
Click on the above image to see the video of the steam powered generator in action.
I recalled that Dan from Otherpower, mentioned while demonstrating his steam engine that when the firebox had the steam up on the locomotive style engine he would add a little bit of water. Until Keith enlightened us about the hydrogen I had no idea why the steam powered generator kicked it up a notch in power after giving the fire a shot of water.
So that’s, that’s my morning newsletter for this Monday. It’s all about friends and the energy of community, communication, and education.
We’ll see each other soon.