The Green Machine at Jasper Hill Farm

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The Green Machine at Jasper Hill Farm combines compost heat recovery, anaerobic digestion, biological waste water filtration, grey water, and food production in one of the most highly integrated and unique waste to energy to food systems in the world. As a Highfields’ Lead Designer on the project, we focused on the composting and heat recovery portions of the system. The compost heat recovery system we chose was developed by Agrilab Technologies and utilized a technique in composting called Aerated Static Pile (ASP) composting. Heat is pulled from the composting dairy manure through a system of ductwork by a high powered blower, providing fresh oxygen to microbes simultaneously. This hot air and vapor then passes over Agrilab’s Isobar heat exchanger, which transfers the heat into water. Compost heat that exits the hydronic Isobar heat exchanger, is then pushed through this planter bed (right), which filters the exhaust. Acting as a secondary heat recovery system, a planted “biofilter” supplies both additional heat and CO2 to the greenhouse. The heated water created by the primary heat exchanger is then used to heat an anaerobic digester, which produces methane, and the heated liquid in the digester (digestate) then passes through the wastewater filtration system in the greenhouse, providing thermal energy to the green house. Finally, the filtered grey water is used to drip irrigate an orchard and vegetables are grown in the extra spaces in the greenhouse which are plentiful. Visit Jasper Hill Farm and The Green Machine.

Compost heat the exits the hydronic Isobar heat exchanger, is then pushed through this planter bed (right), which filters the exhaust. This secondary heat recovery system adds supplies both additional heat and CO2 to the greenhouse.

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