SBIR Phase I: Aerobic Microbial Conversion of Agricultural Manures to Biofuels
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
MENON AND ASSOCIATES, INC.
12282 Libelle Ct., San Diego, CA, 92131-3845
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will demonstrate the feasibility of using manure from cattle and hogs to make bio-diesel and, in so doing, reducing the environmental impact of releasing untreated or anaerobically fermented manure. The rich mineral content of feces generated by concentrated animal feeding operations can make it an environmental hazard during storage and reuse as fertilizer, by polluting ground and surface water with excess phosphorus and nitrogen or by release of nitrous oxide and methane greenhouse gases into the air. This project will feed manure to microbes that can utilize its carbon to make lipids that will be extracted and upgraded into bio-diesel. Following lipid extraction, the remaining solids will be analyzed to determine a useful purpose for them. Concomitantly, it will be determined whether the re-purposed spent solids are less toxic to the environment than the input manure. The broader/commercial impacts of this research will be in licensing the technology and supplying the microbe for on-farm manure-to-bio-diesel reactors. Farmers would benefit by using a waste they would normally need to dispose of to make bio-diesel for their farm machinery and vehicles, and by using or selling the spent solids for a use identified under the proposed effort. Ultimately, finding a way to reduce manure runoff and off-gassing will result in cleaner water supplies and less polluted air.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.