A Machine that turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Kevin, keeping it simple, perhaps the residents of Dakar are using too much water in their flush? Could 10% solids be seen to be a reasonable and achievable aspiration...reducing unnecessary water consumption ten fold. Not that the concept behind the Janicki Omni Processor meets my approval, ash comes second to organic matter in the sustainabilty stakes.

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Dean

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Dean Kevin
As per one paper of Strauss, 1996, Total solids in septage in tropical countries are less than 3 %. Therefore 10 % TS is not expected. In India it is taken as 2% TS only.
The calculation of energy balance from the Omini processor system should be explained by Janicki. It does not appear feasible to adopt the system due to high opex.

pawan

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Re: Drinking Water From Feces

Dear Elisabeth:
I have never heard anything about where the NPK goes. Do you have informationa about that?
best wishes
Scott

Chen Xiang Yang, an apple dealer,is growing apples and cherries with the human waste collected from 31 school UDDTs donated by SOHO China Foundation, based in Tianshui City, Gansu Province , China. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., tel:0086 151 9380 3972
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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

A couple of responses to posts over the last 24 hours.

First, while most wastewater and sludge treatment processes do replicate what nature does naturally, this is not the case with the Omni Processor. It relies on boiling off the liquid from the sludge, which is a very different concept to most treatment processes. As Pawan says, most septage has less than 3% solids and so the machine needs pre-treatment to dewater the sludge. Basically, you are then back to more conventional approaches to treatment and the thing can no longer be described as an Omni Processor

I am not entirely sure why septage quantities in Dakar are so high - the probable explanation is that pits and tanks do not drain because of the high water table but I do not have direct experience of this. I did some work early last year on a treatment plant in Myanmar which had similar problems because the water table was high and most of the 'septage' included water that could not drain away, probably with some that was infiltrating. I very much doubt if the problem is that people are using too much water when flushing toilets. I would expect most toilets in Dakar to be either direct drop pits or pour flush but others will know more about this than me.

The bottom line is surely that the Omni Processor is not an appropriate technology for sludge dewatering

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Dear Kevin,
Thanks for returning to this thread and sparking such a lively discussion!

It would indeed be very interesting to know how this machine is working out in Dakar, and how they get around this issue of thickening/dewatering the fecal sludge before it can be processed in the omni-processor. I will send some e-mails in the background to alert the Janicki staff to this thread in case they haven't seen it yet.

Dean: the fecal sludge that is used as a feed to the omni-processor is not just from pit latrines but also from septic tanks (if I understand correctly). Even if flush water for the toilets was minimised the fecal sludge would still be rather liquidy in any case, as it gets pumped out from the septic tank. Also, when pumping fecal sludge from a pit latrine, water is often added to the pit to make it more easily pumpable. So just reducing toilet flush water would not make much any difference in this case.

In my role as moderator I have split off two conversations that started in this thread but that began to deviate from the topic of the omni-processor. This is not to say that the conversations are not important (quite the contrary) but it's just in order to keep things neat and tidy here on the forum.

Therefore, you now find the posts about the AlasCan system here:
forum.susana.org/component/kunena/205-ve...merly-alascan-system
(note it's also been discussed under its more recent name Human Endeavors here:
forum.susana.org/component/kunena/205-ve...in-future-costa-rica )

And the posts about the shower water recycling as started by Sjoerd are here:
forum.susana.org/component/kunena/40-gre...ling-eg-shower-water

If the people involved in those threads (Clint, Sjoerd, Kevin) prefer different thread titles or different sub-categories then please send me an e-mail about that (rather than telling me by forum post), thanks.

Regards,
Elisabeth

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Hi Scott,

from the Janicki website the S200 machine processes 50,000 liters/day and produces 1-2 tonnes per day of ash. Because this is a combustion process there is no organic matter (carbon) left, so no N. The P and K will mostly be retained in the ash, which will hold value as a fertiliser.

cheers
Dean

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Hi, Dean:
It sounds great.
The NP in the ash would be very good for the crops.
Let's wait and see the energy efficiency and maintainance cost.
Many thanks.
Scott

Chen Xiang Yang, an apple dealer,is growing apples and cherries with the human waste collected from 31 school UDDTs donated by SOHO China Foundation, based in Tianshui City, Gansu Province , China. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., tel:0086 151 9380 3972
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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Hi Dean and All

Discussion is going on for considerable time. Main issue is external energy required to operate the system. Since the system is already under in Dakar by Janicki,he is requested to provide actual energy balance of the system and its operation and maintenance costs. There is no response from him so far. I remember, he has mentioned in the brochure that the system produces surplus electrical energy to be used by community on purchase basis. Let us have concrete information from him.

regards

pawan

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

I'm still interested in some more information regarding solids content of septage pumped from pit latrines and septic tanks. I appreciate that if too "sludgey" it wouldn't pump well, but what innovations are taking place in this field? What is the viable (i.e maximum and average) solids content potential from different available pumping technologies? I'm not convinced that just using available data from current practice is appropriate in this context...

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

This technology already exists.
I wish Gates Foundation would hire advisors who know the wastewater field.

This system is expensive to operate and requires informed operators.

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Hi Carol,

Eng. Mughal raised the question of cost of this technology 2 years ago. The term expensive is relative. I think the people at Bill Gates Foundation are aware of what you have just raised but I guess they want to achieve the tech in a different approach at all costs, regardless of the expense, effort or sacrifice involved.

Warren Buffet was once reported as saying ‘Price is what you pay. Value is what you get’.

Best regards / Mwaniki

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Re: Bill Gates blog posts: This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water (Omni-processor by Janicki to process sludge) - now in Dakar, Senegal

Hi, Elesabeth:
I really wish the forum had a Chinese version so that more and more Chinese know what we are talking about.
best wishes
Scott

Chen Xiang Yang, an apple dealer,is growing apples and cherries with the human waste collected from 31 school UDDTs donated by SOHO China Foundation, based in Tianshui City, Gansu Province , China. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., tel:0086 151 9380 3972
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