PlanET Vario inside view

Press information: Vario receives top marks

PlanET Vario überzeugt als Techniklösung

PlanET Biogastechnik GmbH has surveyed 80 users of the VARIO solids charging system on the processing of the charging materials, maintenance friendliness and energy consumption. Over 88 percent responded to the question “How satisfied are you with the VARIO?” with “satisfied” or “very satisfied.” 82 percent also rated the energy consumption as “good” or “very good.” PlanET Biogastechnik GmbH developed the first solids charging technology for biogas plants in 2001.

VARIO Proves Itself as an Impressive Technical Solution

The result of the latest customer survey over the course of the past few years confirms the Münsterland biogas company’s status as pioneer in the development of charging systems for biogas plants. “Our technological enhancements always had two defined goals: Maximum substrate flexibility of and malfunction-free and trouble-free operation, even with difficult substrates,” is how Andreas Thesseling, manager of the charging technology department at PlanET Biogastechnik GmbH, summarises the main requirements for technical solutions for charging systems. Both challenges were taken to heart during the VARIO’s development. In particular, the modular expandability from 21 m3 to 120 m3 offers customers maximum flexibility with substrate volume and feed rhythm. It is also available in the special sizes 12 m3 and 16 m3, which were proprietarily developed specifically for the 75kW farm-scale plants. “At the heart of the VARIO are the hydraulic-powered conveyor elements, which are propelled individually and reliably move the material past the opening cylinder and on to the feed auger. It is very dependable because it ensures that the material will be transported even if one or more conveyor elements fail,” says the PlanET product manager.

From strawy grass to pulpy beets

“Of course, we also conduct our customer surveys from the perspective of refining our plant technology to meet the requirements of a variety of applications,” Thesseling continues. “For instance, responses on problematic charging materials such as slightly frozen substrates have led us to offer a second opening cylinder as an option. This now makes it possible to smoothly transport lengths of cut of up to 50 mm and cutting volumes of up to 100 mm. We’ve also received important input on the best way to layer the material in the feed tank to ensure trouble-free operation.” The North Rhine-Westphalia biogas plant manufacturer has also developed the PlanET eco flow® for spraying solids into the biogas plant through a pipeline. “This solution is of particular interest to customers who are only able to install the charging system a short distance away from the fermenter,” says the development manager. “Another advantage of the spray solution is the ability to feed multiple fermenters or charge liquid and semi-liquid coferments.”