A British company has developed the world’s first tractor to run entirely on cow dung.
Powered by liquid methane gas, the T7 vehicle is said to be the first of its kind and could mark a game changer in efficiently bringing energy to UK farms.
The groundbreaking 270hp tractor runs on fuel derived from farmyard manure and is designed to match the performance of standard diesel-powered versions.
It works by collecting waste by-products from a herd of just 100 cows into on-farm biomethane storage units. The gas, known as volatile methane, is then treated, compressed and converted into the low-emission fuel.
A tractor-mounted cryogenic tank keeps the methane in liquid form at -162 degrees, giving the vehicle as much power as a diesel, but with significant emissions savings.
The pioneering machine was developed by Cornish company Bennamann, who have been researching and developing biomethane production for over a decade.
It was put through its paces during a pilot run on a farm in Cornwall, where carbon emissions were cut from 2,500 tonnes to 500 tonnes in just one year.
Bennamann co-founder Chris Mann said: “The liquid methane-powered T7 tractor is a true world first and another step towards decarbonizing the global agricultural industry and realizing a circular economy.
“Methane also has a more than 80 times stronger atmosphere-warming power than carbon dioxide over 20 years. By removing it and using it wisely, we help fight global warming fast.
“We have shown that harnessing the potential of biomethane can make farms energy self-sufficient and carbon neutral.”
To create the liquefied fuel, the methane gas is first collected and stored in one of Bennamann’s on-farm biomethane capture and storage systems. The government-sponsored systems are used to seal manure lagoons to capture methane that would otherwise escape into the atmosphere.
The company is also investigating the broader users of the technology and hopes that it could one day be used to charge electric vehicles in rural areas.
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https://metro.co.uk/2023/01/06/tractor-running-off-cow-poo-matches-its-diesel-powered-rivals-18047504/ The tractor that removes cow dung befits its diesel-powered rivals