Swing Corporation has constructed a biogas plant at the Kandatsu Material Recycle Center (Tsuchiura) for Hitachi Cement Co., Ltd. (Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture). The completion of the largest biogasification (methane fermentation) plant for food waste in Japan, which had been under construction since October 2010, was celebrated on March 26.

After test operation, the biogas plant is scheduled to start commercial operation this summer. It has a capacity of 135.9 t/d and produces more than 8,000 ㎥/d of biogas (equivalent to about 4,000 L of heavy oil in terms of calorific value), which is used at the existing eco-friendly plant (incinerator with 150 t/d capacity) as auxiliary fuel. In turn, the biogas plant uses the steam generated by the incinerator as a heat source and for power generation. Thus, the biogas plant is a hybrid system based on energy recycling.

The plant supports a wide variety of biomass feedstock by handling municipally collected raw materials (domestic kitchen waste and industrial food waste, including food processing residues, beverage waste, expired food products, and sludge) separately according to the type of waste. After methane fermentation, the waste will be converted into compost for use in the neighborhood.

*The construction of the plant was funded by the regional biomass utilization subsidy of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.