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Gas Use Devices

While a variety of gas use options are available, the collected biogas is most often used to generate electricity for on-farm use or sale to the local electric utility. Thermal energy in the form of waste heat, produced during electricity generation, can be recovered to heat digesters or adjacent buildings. Other uses include:

Photo of an engine generator set.

Photo: AgSTAR

A 120 kW engine generator set combusts recovered biogas, generating electricity for on-farm use.

Photo of a heat exchanger.

Photo: AgSTAR

A heat exchanger works in conjunction with an engine-generator set to recover heat for space and water heating, thus reducing fuel oil or propane costs.

Photo of a biogas boiler.

Photo: AgSTAR

Biogas can be fired directly in boilers or heaters as a replacement for propane.

Photo of a biogas flare.

Photo: AgSTAR

Photo of a biogas flare and flame.

Photo: AgSTAR


Flares are used to combust excess biogas or to combust biogas during periods when the primary gas use device is undergoing maintenance or repair. In cases where the primary purpose of the digester is odor control or the generation of carbon credits, all of the biogas may be flared.


Photo of a biogas pipelines.

Photo: OWS/Phase3Renewables

Biogas can be cleaned to pipeline quality and sold to the local gas utility.

Photo of a biogas compressor.

Photo: OWS/Phase3Renewables

Photo of a truck fueled with compressed natural gas.

Photo: OWS/Phase3Renewables


Biogas can be converted to compressed natural gas (CNG) which can be used in applications such as vehicle fuel.

Next section: Digester Byproducts »

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