Hydrogen as a Combustion Enhancer to Landfill Gas Utilization in Spark Ignition Engines 2008-01-1040
Ever increasing price of the fossil fuels, and fast depletion of the petroleum reserves world wide, have greatly encouraged the utilization of the alternative and renewable fuels for the production of electricity and motive power. Among the alternative renewable fuels, landfill gases which were produced by the anaerobic decomposition of organic waste in the landfills and solid waste dump sites were underutilized and overlooked in the past. Lately, there has been an increased interest in this research as the utilization of the landfill gas would provide energy independence, generate revenue and create environmental benefits. They are used both in the internal combustion engines and gas turbines for energy production needs. However because of the low heating value (Btu) content in the landfill gases, competitive energy market and other issues, they were not considered for the energy production in the past in most of the cases. In this context it is necessary to investigate various ways of improving the landfill gas utilization for energy production and encourage the landfill gas to electricity (LFGTE) projects.
Hydrogen having superior combustion properties is considered as an enhancer to the combustion of the landfill gas in the spark ignition engine in this study. The effects of addition of a small amount of hydrogen to the landfill gas on the performance and combustion characteristics of a spark ignition engine are discussed and optimum process parameters at which hydrogen addition to landfill gas will be economically beneficial are also presented.