Report about faecal sludge solar thermal drying (WRC project, South Africa)

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  • SeptienS
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Report available in the SuSana library about faecal sludge solar thermal drying (WRC project, South Africa)

Dear colleagues,

I have added into the SuSana library the final report of a research project about the exploration of faecal sludge solar thermal drying (project funded by the Water Research Commission from South Africa). The link to consult the document is as follow:
www.susana.org/en/knowledge-hub/resource...library/details/4108

Please contact me if you have any doubt from the report or if you want to learn more about the project.

Kindly,
Santiago

Summary of the work:
Solar thermal energy, an abundant and free source of energy in the world, particularly in a major part of developing countries, could supplement heat for drying purposes, leading to the decrease of the operating costs. In the sanitation sector, the use of solar energy for faecal sludge drying has been minimal, with only a few cases. Possible reasons for the low use of solar drying is the lack of awareness about this type of technology, as well as a lack of knowledge and data for the design of plants that could dissuade sanitation practitioners from using solar drying technologies. Motivated from these gaps, a fundamental study was conducted in this project to characterize
faecal sludge solar drying, through funding from the Water Research Commission. The data obtained during the project could be used for the design of solar drying plants, improvement of existing technologies and innovation of further ones. This study was done by the development of a thermobalance to measure the kinetics and calculate the energy balance during solar drying at different conditions. This information is crucial for the design and development of solar dryers. Moreover, a series of analyses were conducted in the dried sample with the objectives to determine how solar drying affects the physical and chemical properties of faecal sludge, with the intention to better understand the phenomenology of the process, and to evaluate the reuse of the product in agriculture and as a biofuel.
Dr. Santiago Septien Stringel
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  • Elisabeth
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Re: Report about faecal sludge solar thermal drying (WRC project, South Africa)

Hi Santiago,
Thanks for disseminating your research results on faecal sludge solar thermal drying by adding your report to the SuSanA library and posting here on the forum. Much appreciated!

I've looked for an overall conclusion from the report and found this in your conclusions section:

It is important to mention the main challenges to face during solar drying trials, which consist in the
heterogeneity of the sludge and the variability of the external conditions from one day
to another (weather and sunshine conditions). In order to offset these limitations in the
extent of the possible, appropriate sampling methods for heterogeneous material
should be applied, which is already done with positive results, and the methods to
measure temperature and irradiance employed in our context should be better
understood.

The second outcome of the project was the generation of valuable data and
knowledge, acquired during the design and construction of the solar drying rig, the
literature review, and the experimentation and data analysis phases. Based on the
learnt lessons and gained knowledge, section 6 presents initial guidelines for the
implementation of solar drying technologies for faecal sludge treatment. This
information should be completed and validated with the development of more detailed
guidelines in the future.

In the interest of utilising and disseminating research results about faecal sludge treatment, I am wondering if information from your report should be added to the Wikipedia article on faecal sludge management? It could fit here under emerging technologies:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fecal_sludge_manag...merging_technologies
If yes, would you like to add it in?

Regards,
Elisabeth
Head moderator of this Discussion Forum
(formerly with financial support by WSSCC, now SHF)

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Twitter: @EvMuench
Founder of WikiProject Sanitation: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
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  • SeptienS
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  • Post-doctorate from the Pollution Research Group, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban
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Re: Report about faecal sludge solar thermal drying (WRC project, South Africa)

Dear Elizabeth,

I apologize for the slow reply.

I can add a section about solar thermal drying in the FSM Wikipedia section.

Under the "emerging technologies" section, I suggest adding a bullet point with the following text:  "solar thermal dryers relying on the collection of the solar thermal energy for drying and pasteurization of faecal sludge. In these systems, the sludge is placed inside an enclosure of transparent or opaque walls, with a ventilation system for moisture evacuation. The sludge can be dried by hot air that was heated by solar thermal collector (indirect solar dryer), by direct exposure to solar radiation (direct solar dryer), or by both modes (mixed solar dryer".

Please tell me what you think.

Kindly,
Santiago
Dr. Santiago Septien Stringel
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  • Elisabeth
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Re: Report about faecal sludge solar thermal drying (WRC project, South Africa)

Hi Santiago,

That's excellent. I have now added the little paragraph to the Wikipedia article on FSM as per your suggestion:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fecal_sludge_manag...merging_technologies

It reads like this:

Solar thermal dryers
Solar thermal dryers rely on the collection of the solar thermal energy for drying and pasteurization of fecal sludge. In these systems, the sludge is placed inside an enclosure of transparent or opaque walls, with a ventilation system for moisture evacuation. The sludge can be dried by hot air that was heated by a solar thermal collector (indirect solar dryer), by direct exposure to solar radiation (direct solar dryer), or by both modes (mixed solar dryer). [31]

Just one small thing: I am not sure about the term "pasteurization" that you used. I was going to Wikilink it to the Wikipedia article on pasteurization but it says:
"Pasteurization  or  pasteurisation is a process in which packaged and non-packaged foods (such as  milk  and fruit  juice ) are treated with mild heat, usually to less than 100 °C (212 °F), to eliminate  pathogens  and extend  shelf life ."

So I think using the term "pasteurization" for fecal sludge might not be correct (or we have to change the Wikipedia article on pasteurization...).
Could we replace the term in your paragraph with "pathogen reduction" (or "pathogen elimination")? Do you get pathogens down to zero with that technology?

Regards,
Elisabeth
Head moderator of this Discussion Forum
(formerly with financial support by WSSCC, now SHF)

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Twitter: @EvMuench
Founder of WikiProject Sanitation: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
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