Poultry Litter AD

PFED specializes in the anaerobic digestion and capture of nutrients from poultry litter

Poultry litter is a combination of bedding (usually wood chips), manure, feathers, bones, mortalities and any other material that finds its way into the mix. It is much drier than other manures, but also tends to be very high in nitrogen and phosphorus (average 3% by weight of each).

In the United States, more than one billion tons of animal manure is produced per year (> 1,000,000,000 tons/year)1. In the Chesapeake Bay region, the poultry industry dominates, and poultry litter alone totals greater than 800,000 tons annually2.

Due to its composition, poultry litter is notoriously difficult to successfully digest. The high wood content often leads to physical problems (e.g. clogging), and the high nitrogen content can cause toxicity in the microbes responsible for methane production.

PFED has dedicated four years to overcoming these technical challenges, both in its lab facilities and in its Combined AD + NCS Pilot at Millennium Farms in Pocomoke City, Maryland. As a result of this work, PFED has developed a specialized microbial community capable of producing methane at a rate greater than 0.200 m3/kg VS added, surpassing most previous systems run on poultry litter alone.

PFED has also developed an expertise in running farm-scale AD and nutrient capture systems on poultry litter. It has built and currently operates one of only six poultry litter digesters in the nation, and is the only system which performs nutrient capture in addition to AD.

1 Zhang, 2014. Chapter 1 - Animal Manure Production and Utilization in the US. In Applied Manure and Nutrient Chemistry for Sustainable Agriculture and Environment.

2 Risch, 2008. Evaluation of the Opportunities to Commercialize Thermophilic Anaerobic Digestion of Broiler Litter in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Marshall University Center for Business and Economic Research.

Planet Found Energy Development, LLC

107 Market Street

Pocomoke City, MD 21851

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