Request for Proposals by 61Q2i5E


									                        Biomass Briquetting

          Submitted to the Engineering Excellence Fund Committee
                      University of Colorado at Boulder


                  Madeline Tyson               Sean Aronson
                  EVEN                          EVEN
             303-817-4787                   303-886-1651

   Kaitlin McKenzie                           Melanie DeSessa
      CHEN                                         CHEN           
 720-480-9448                                   720-312-1076

                              John Pellegrino
Project Description:
        The Engineers Without Borders-USA University of Colorado at Boulder Chapter Rwanda
Project has been refreshed this year with energized new undergraduate student volunteers from a
range of engineering disciplines. In the past, EWB Rwanda students have designed working
solutions ranging from high efficiency stoves to water sanitation options. This year the new
volunteers are pursuing the development of a biomass briquetting program for the Mugonero
Orphanage in Rwanda. Rwanda is the most deforested country in the world, and as such it has a
huge need for sustainable fuel alternatives, like biomass briquetting. Firewood is a huge financial
burden for the orphanage, which needs to obtain financial independence in order to continue to
        A first phase technology study is underway to evaluate the feasibility of this technology
in Rwanda. If the study finds briquetting to be economically and socially worthwhile it is to be
implemented at the orphanage in Rwanda in the summer of 2009. This EEF grant request is to
support this technology assessment study as well as its probable implementation during the
2008-2009 academic year.
        Biomass briquetting uses agricultural waste to create an alternate energy source for those
who struggle to find and afford cooking fuel. Biomass briquetting is a new technology which
has been implemented in several other developing countries, and has been shown to greatly aid
the communities which utilize it. The process involves several steps. First, it must be collected
and chopped. A grinder, designed by the students, chops the organic matter into the correct size.
The type of grinder will be one of the two main design projects, and will require careful
considerations about the type of inputs and outputs along with any energy or labor costs. The
grinder selection will also impact the total efficiency of the process. After shredding, the waste
is composted for 2-3 weeks. The material is then mixed with water and compressed into
briquettes which can then be dried and burned, similar to a charcoal briquette in a barbeque.
Design of the press is the other major design venture.
        Briquetting projects in other parts of the world have provided a research foundation
which begins to describe the combustible efficiencies and properties of different types of
agricultural matter. This data, in combination with our own pilot studies, will provide an
interesting research opportunity for maximizing our briquettes. The other major components of
the study will be concerned with the resulting efficiency of various briquette compositions,
composting durations, oven type, shape of the briquettes, and the economic viability of the
This project is different from our past work, in that while a prototype can be designed, real
efficiency comes from tailoring it to the community and resources in which it will be
implemented. While we will check back on the orphanage, they will be using and operating the
system on a daily basis and as such must have a complete understanding of the process. This
project will provide an opportunity for innovation in design as well as application of engineering
principles and a way to learn about process design from initiation to implementation. The final
designs will be subject to review by EWB-USA technical advisory committee (EWB-TAC) to
provide feedback and ensure that we go to Rwanda with a workable plan. This review process
will give the students an opportunity to present a real-world design to a professional audience.
Our team of new volunteer engineering students is motivated about taking on this project. The
research and development efforts will not only help Rwanda, but the many students at CU-
Boulder who are involved with it.
1. Project Budget
Budget Summary:
 Total Project Budget $ 2469.00
 EEF Request          $ 1969.00

Outside funding:
 Source                                                 Total Amount
                                   Confirmed? [Y/N]
 Department Contribution                                $
 College Contribution                                   $
 SOFO                                       Y           $ 500.00

Budget Breakdown:
Equipment and Materials:
                                           Unit Price   Quantity   Total Amount
 Item Name / Description
 Prototype - Colorado
 Specialized Grinder:
  Sheet metal, rotary gears, stand, etc.     600.00        1           600.00
 Wood (compost bin)                          100.00        1           100.00
 Pitchfork                                    20.00        2            40.00
 Plastic for composting                       10.00        3            30.00
 Large Plastic Buckets                        15.00        2            30.00
 Wooden Press:
 4”X4” Wooden timbers/posts                   25.00        8           200.00
  PVC                                         10.00        6            60.00
 Nuts/Bolts (also for compost bin)             0.20       100           20.00
 Briquette Cohesion:
 Metal Rack                                   25.00        1           25.00
 Wood (overhead protection/storage)           50.00        1           50.00

 In Rwanda
 Specialized Grinder:
  Sheet metal, rotary gears, stand, etc.     450.00        1           450.00
 Wood (compost bin)                          100.00        1            100
 Pitchfork                                    13.00        2             26
 Plastic for composting                        3.00        3              9
 Large Plastic Buckets                         3.00        2              6
 Wooden Press:
 4”X4” Wooden timbers/posts                   80.00        8            640
  PVC                                         10.00        6             60
 Nuts/Bolts (also for compost bin)             0.08       100           8.00
 Briquette Cohesion:
Metal Rack                           15.00    1       15.00
Wood (overhead protection/storage)    n/a     0        0.00
                                             Total   $ 2469.00

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