ESR: Making Waste our Greatest Resource

Well designed rice hull stoves produce clean blue flames at up to 1,000 C, and the fuel is virtually free.
Well designed rice hull stoves produce clean blue flames at up to 1,000 C, and the fuel is virtually free.

“At ESR we design sustainable solutions to waste and energy challenges. These solutions weave together engineering and ecological thinking and are deeply embedded in the economic, social, and cultural context of their application.

ESR believes our future demands closed-loop design that treats waste not as a necessary by-product, but a resource that can fuel society.

Sample topic: Biomass gasification and the benefits of biochar
Here we turn to the simplicity of top-lit, updraft (TLUD), forced-air gasifiers. These gasifiers operate quite well on many types of fine biomass such as rice hulls, rice straw, coffee bean husks, bagasse, wood chips, the shells of nuts, pine needles, tobacco waste and so forth.

In starting the process, the burner is removed and the reactor is filled with biomass. The fan is turned on, and paper is placed on the top of the biomass and lit. Once the paper burns over the entire surface of the biomass, it only takes seconds for the biomass to ignite.

When the burner is placed on top of the reactor, the open flames within the reactor go out, and gasification begins. Soon the temperature within the reactor reaches as high as 1,000 C, provided of course that the biomass is sufficiently dry.

As the gasification zone proceeds from top to bottom of the reactor, a thick layer of fine hot char is formed above the point where the gases are released. Thousands of years ago Amazon Indians incorporated charcoal into the soil to enhance its fertility, and surprisingly a lot of this charcoal still remains fixed in the soil to this day. If we want to combat global warming and remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, we can also incorporate biochar into the soil.”

Sampling of other topics on their site:
Transforming invasive plants into fuel
Rice hull house
Thermophilic composting
Mesophilic storage and reduction

Contact Dr. Paul Olivier
US telephone: 1-337-447-4124

Source: Engineering, Separation and Recycling LLC

1 thought on “ESR: Making Waste our Greatest Resource”

  1. Besides efficient fuel for cooking, imagine two of these stoves firing a boiler. Rice hulls are practically free, so that’s some serious energy output at extremely low cost. Plus you get biochar as a by-product.


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