The wastewater can refuel the SEAT León TGI


Since the oil crisis of ‘ 73 did wake up definitely to the West of his dream (it was believed at the oil infinite and cheap) one of the obsessions of our civilization is the energy independence. This is, not having to depend on unstable countries or which can vary a lot price and knock down our economies. You have been looking for replacements to oil for decades.

One of the alternatives is the natural gas, that is to say, methane. This hydrocarbon is relatively easy to obtain, and its combustion is very clean; it’s just generate toxic gases, chemically it is ideal to burn. One of the advantages of this fuel is that can be obtained from renewable way, without exhausting the numerous fossil deposits on the planet.

biogas there is another thing that the methane produced from this type of processes, such as the natural decomposition of the biomass or exhaust gas of the pig or beef. There are farms that, in addition to products always, are also generating biogas, and this can be used in vehicles such as the SEAT Leon TGI. The exhaust doesn’t smell of anything, quiet.


let’s Not confuse CNG with LPG, because the latter is butane and propane, a different compound, and to a lower pressure. A few brands are opting for the CNG, which has a lower availability than LPG, but it is more interesting. The cost is less, and the exhaust gases are cleaner, although the energy density of the deposits is lower. There are to refuel more often, but at a lower price.

SEAT collaborate on a project of Aqualia, the division of water treatment from the FCC. The manufacturer has leased a couple of cars for testing in a water treatment plant in Cadiz, where a treatment chemical to the wastewater to generate biogas. This would give a better use to the waste generated in the area, producing a fuel suitable for use in automotive.

project Smart Green Gas has as partners the energy companies Gas Natural Fenosa and Naturgas EDP, in addition to the Catalan Institute for Water Research (ICRA) and the Centre for Industrial Technological Development (CDTI). In addition, collaborate with the Universities of Girona, Valladolid and Santiago de Compostela.

An ambitious project

The project has as objective gas-producing autonomously (without relying on foreign powers) and in large volumes. With the production of a day of the depiradora of Jerez, 1,000 cubic metres of methane, feed 300 cars to make to 15,000 km a year. Needless to say, it is a volume more than enough to mount a supplier of gas and feed all the vehicles in the area that are compatible with CNG.

The process of transformation requires energy, as the phase of compression of the gas, but has the advantage that saves 80% CO2 emissions. That is to say, the net emissions that will produce the vehicle will result in a very minor impact on the environment. The comparison is done with the process, “well-to-wheel” of a vehicle to the gasoline of fossil origin.

vehicles to methane, such as the Leon TGI, will work with this gas, until they exhaust the deposits of high-pressure. From that moment on you will strip the tank of gasoline, without noticing changes in benefits or in the other direction. By this feature with an injection system dual that makes the driver not notice the difference in the time (you will notice when you refuel in the cost).


If the project is successful, the possibilities of gas generation are immense: how many sewage treatment plants are there in Spain that can produce gas? Quite a few… Sobraría for automotive, and you can pipe the surplus for use in heating or in any other type of process. As the sewage never missing, the supply is potentially inexhaustible.

waiting for the electric cars allow the same degree of freedom and mobility to the traditional models, the use of gas is a good interim step. The gasoline engines can be adapted, since there is hardly any availability of models such as the Leon TGI. The VAG Group bet by the GNC after having little success with the LPG. Quite a few brands are betting on this technology, as is the case of Fiat or Mercedes.

this is Not the first attempt to produce fuel from waste. The company Elecofasa has a method for the creation of synthetic fuels from solid urban waste (R. S. U.) If it were to be used on an industrial scale these technologies, Spain would be much more independent on the energetic level of what it is now, where almost all of the fuel has to be imported.