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Development of a model for identifying the optimal biogas system design in Sub-Saharan Africa

Rupf, G.V., Bahri, P.A., de Boer, K. and McHenry, M.P. (2016) Development of a model for identifying the optimal biogas system design in Sub-Saharan Africa. Computer Aided Chemical Engineering, 38 . pp. 1533-1538.

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Biogas technology has been recognised as a suitable technology for improving energy access, waste management, and sanitation in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Uptake of the technology in the region has been sporadic and currently dissemination programmes are limited to five countries. The main barriers hindering larger dissemination include high installation costs, inadequate user training, insufficient servicing, and inappropriate designs. Poor design choices, mainly due to overlooking the user energy needs and local conditions, contribute to the short lifespan of many installed biogas systems. This research aims to address the gap in appropriate designs of biogas systems through the development of a model that identifies optimal designs for particular applications in SSA based on user defined priorities of sustainability criteria. TOPSIS, a multi-criteria decision making method is used in the model to identify the optimal system based on the priority rating of the criteria and the designs that are feasible according to the main parameters. The model was applied to a typical Kenyan household where a 9 m3 modified CAMARTEC solid state digester was identified as the optimal biogas system.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Engineering and Information Technology
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 2016 Elsevier B.V.
Other Information: Abstract from: 26th European Symposium on Computer Aided Process Engineering
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