Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) developed a landfill project for Eastern Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) where 30 kW Capstone microturbine is installed to produce power from landfill gas. GAIL had also supplied technical assistance for landfill closure as well as providing gas tapping wells and connecting all these to a common gas manifold piping for further treatment and supply to microturbine as fuel.
This initiative is in line with the present government’s commitment to enhance the renewable energy component of the country’s energy production target and agreements made at the recent Paris climate summit. Recent Chennai floods have left tons of solid waste accumulating in Indian cities which require solutions like EDMC adopted in Eastern Delhi.
GAIL explored all options including producing compressed natural gas (CNG) by compressing landfill gas (LFG), and also producing power with the LFT using a reciprocating engine genset. But it finally decided to go with microturbine technology as reciprocating gas engine could not operate satisfactorily when methane content fell t less than 50%.
Generators required for producing power from LFG must have capability of remote start and operation, continuous unattended operation, ease of maintenance and high reliability. The Capstone microturbine met those requirements. It can operate with 35% or less methane content in the inlet gas. As well as tolerance for low amounts of methane, the microturbine does not have maintenance intensive components like an oil pump, oil filter, water pump, radiator, coupling or starter motor. A total of six major sub-assemblies requiring periodic maintenance attention are absent in this microturbine.