At Interlude Farm, close to Cape Town in South Africa, a N2 test installation is located. February 20th, 2019, we organized a launch and demonstration event. We demonstrated the N2 technology and explained the working principles to an interested group of invited stakeholders – local farmers, policy makers, academia and representatives from the biogas industry.
The plasma reactor is mounted in a container and manure from Fair Cape Dairies has been processed to upgrade the manure to valuable fertilizer. In collaboration with the Stellenbosch University a two-year research project will execute agronomic field trials with the fertilizer on the wheat fields of the farm during the 2019 and 2020. The aim is to compare crop N-use efficiency, productivity and soil quality between processed manure, unprocessed manure and with chemical fertilizers in various doses.
The event was opened by the Minister Counsellor, Mr. Paal Bjørnestad of the Royal Norwegian Embassy of Pretoria. Dr. Ailsa Hardie of the Stellenbosch University presented the research project and the rationale behind the study. She explained that a recent US study had found that dairy manure slurry resulted in a significantly lower N uptake efficiency compared to mineral fertilizer. The Stellenbosch trials will investigate if treated manure performs equal to mineral fertilizer, the N2 solution was also presented.
During the presentations our guests got the opportunity to ask questions and this resulted in interesting discussions about the challenges, as well as opportunities of our solution for the farmers and the biogas industry. Reducing ammonia emissions is a challenge for livestock farmers and is also one of the important positive effects of the N2 solution. It potentially supports farmers in complying to environmental regulations and at the same time produces a high value fertilizer.