Swindon Plant

The Swindon Plant is the first facility in the world to convert household waste into grid-quality biomethane. ABSL is the owner, developer and technical lead for the project.

You can take a virtual tour of our plant by watching five films showing the major steps in our process at Swindon:

Feedstock and Prep / A win-win situation

Local Swindon waste is sorted and prepared offsite, brought to the plant in moving floor trailers, then stored ready for transformation into a gas.

Gasification / The start of a long journey

The waste is conveyed to an oxy-steam fluidised bed gasifier to produce a dirty syngas. This gas is then heated and exposed to oxygen free radicals to catalyse the reformation of tar in a plasma furnace.

Cleaning and Cooling / Contributing to the green agenda

The tar free syngas is cooled in a boiler with the steam that is produced taken to be used elsewhere in the process..  The gas is filtered to remove particulates and scrubbed to remove acid and alkali contaminants.  At this point we have cool, clean, chemical grade syngas.

Polishing and Methanation / A world first

The clean syngas is compressed and polished before being converted into a usable product.  The injection of steam in a water-gas shift transforms the gas to 50/50 biohydrogen / carbon dioxide mix. The biohydrogen can be removed as an end product at this stage, or passed over catalysts to convert it into a combination of biomethane and carbon dioxide.  The biomethane is injected into the national grid and the carbon dioxide is captured and sold.

Liquefaction / Avoiding a catastrophe

The carbon dioxide is separated, liquified and sold to industry, thus ensuring it doesn’t return to the atmosphere. The remaining natural gas is metered into the grid which transmits it to filling stations to be compressed and used as a low carbon alternative to diesel for HGVs.

Construction of the plant is complete. Cold and wet commissioning is also complete and the plant will be fully operational in 2024.

Once operational, the plant will be a template for large scale commercial facilities.

The facility will accept 8,000 tonnes per year of waste from the local area and convert it into 22GWh or 2.2 million cubic metres of biomethane, enough to heat 1,800 homes or fuel 75 HGVs for a year.

The plant will also produce 6,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide to be liquified for use in industry and 400 tonnes of vitrified ash for use as an aggregate.