Too much phosphorus in water can harm plant and aquatic animal life or cause phytoplankton ‘blooms’. The higher levels of phosphorus are usually caused by sewage, industrial, and agricultural run-off. Fertilizers on residential lawns also contribute to the problem. Quasar Energy has developed the Phosphorus Recovery System (PRS) to remove nearly all the phosphorus from manure. The PRS was recently demonstrated on a dairy farm here in Ohio.
Quasar is known for the process of anaerobic digestion of organic materials, including animal manure and food waste, to convert those materials to energy in the form of compressed natural gas. The solids are sold as fertilizer for farmers’ fields. This new process removes the excess phosphorus from raw manure that farmers typically spread on their fields with no treatment, and could be paired with anaerobic digestion to power CNG vehicles or produce electricity.
We’ve got curriculum for you: students can make their own bench-sized anaerobic digester!