Landfill Gas Generation

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The purpose of this module is to learn about landfill gas, including production rates, collection rates, and emissions. You will explore landfill gas modeling and landfill gas collection system design.

As waste degrades anaerobically the organic components in the waste are converted primarily into carbon dioxide and methane. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas but has a significant energy content. Capture of methane provides environmental benefits as well as commercial if it is used as a fuel. Efficient capture of landfill gas is a challenge particularly prior to closure with an impermeable cover. Design of a gas management system requires accurate description of the waste characteristics, landfill age, and landfill design and operation. Models have been developed that predict landfill gas generation and contaminant emissions based on first-order kinetic degradation of waste. Using these models, the gas collection system can be designed, for example the number of wells needed, the pipe dimensions, and the layout of the collection system can be determined. In addition the model can be used to estimate the potential for energy use, the impact on the environment, and any possible health issues.

By completing the module, you will be able to:

  1. Calculate the rate of gas generation from landfills
  2. Understand the impacts of landfill gas emissions (uncollected gas)
  3. Conceptually design landfill gas collection system

This file contains critical thinking questions that have been included in each module.

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