Sanitary landfills produce large amounts of methane and CO2 gas due to the natural biological digestion of the organic materials incorporated in the fill. If not captured and flared, the produced methane gas vents into the atmosphere as a greenhouse gas with 21 times the warming capacity of carbon dioxide, adding to Global Warming.
Internal combustion engines are used to consume the landfill gas extracted from landfills with the aid of a gas collection system. The gas produced is composed of about 50% methane, about 50% carbon dioxide and a small amount of non-methane organic compounds. Caterpillar low-energy gas engines and generator sets to turn this wasted resource into a valuable and sustainable power solution for customer.
Landfill meshane is an abundant and readily available renewable energy source. It has the potential to fuel 2700 MW of electric generating capacity in the United States alone and 9000 MW worldwide.
Typical scheme of landfill operations: