What is a condensate pump?
A condensate pump is used to remove the water vapor that occurs when biogas is extracted from landfill sites, it can also be used in other settings such as in the home to remove water vapor from air conditioning or heating systems. In this article we will be looking at condensate pumps within landfill sites and biogas production facilities. The water that is produced as part of the biogas extraction process is called condensate, it is also produced during biogas upgrading. Biogas upgrading is the process which removes carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide and water from biogas, leaving behind biomethane which consists of 90% methane. This biomethane can then be used to fuel gas vehicles, for example on farms. It can also be sold on and injected back into the gas grid to be used in houses to heat homes and businesses. Condensate is harmful to the environment and needs to be removed and safely disposed of, or cleaned and recycled to avoid causing any harm to the environment or polluting groundwater.
Condensate pumps can be used in a number of situations where as a result of the process water is produced that needs to be pumped out and disposed of. Two examples are air conditioning units and heating systems, as part of these systems water vapor is produced, this is a byproduct that has no use. In many systems the water is discarded using gravity into a drain where it is carried away with the rest of the waste water. In some applications this is not possible as there is no access to a drain, or the water needs to be treated before it can be disposed of.
In the case of landfill sites, the water slowly collects into pipes that filter into the condensate pump as part of the biogas extraction or biogas upgrading process. When there is enough water in the system the pump activates and directs the water to the holding tank where it can then be processed and disposed of in the correct way. This is an automatic process that is ongoing during the biogas upgrading and biogas extraction process. There are numerous stages where condensate is produced, at each of these stages it needs to be effectively filtered out in order to produce the best possible biomethane without any contaminants.
How is condensate disposed of?
Once condensate has been collected it is pumped out of the condensate pump. It then needs to be carefully disposed of or recycled. Many landfill sites choose to use onsite leachate treatment facilities to dispose of the condensate. The leachate treatment facility uses several processes to remove the harmful pollutants from the waterwater. Leachate is more harmful and contains far more pollutants compared to condensate. Adding the condensate to the leachate treatment facility provides an easy solution for condensate disposal. However, many landfill sites do not have onside leachate treatment facilities. In these instances the condensate needs to be disposed of by transporting it to wastewater treatment facilities or injecting it into the flaring process.
When condensate is not polluted with contaminants it can be used for a number of applications. Condensate needs to be effectively treated before being sold and repurposed. Once the condensate has been treated, separated, and refined, it has a wide range of applications. These applications include within the manufacturing process for plastics, heating, and gasoline. It can also be mixed with other crude oils to dilute them for various uses. Large landfill sites or large anaerobic digestion plants that produce a large amount of natural gas condensate can benefit from these uses. They should look to treat, separate, refine, and sell on this valuable liquid in order to make an additional income.
QED condensate pumping solutions
Here at QED, we offer numerous options to effectively eliminate, dispose or help recycle condensate in the landfill industry. Depending on your current location and options on site, our experts can determine the best solution for you. As well as providing the equipment to help you comply with regulation and eliminate unwanted waste, we can also help you dispose of waste safely. Find out more about leachate and condensate pumping or contact one of our expert teams.