Global Re-Fuel Furnace on Rohrer Farm, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and Weaver Farm, Pendleton County, West Virginia

Animal Manure Management March 16, 2016 Print Friendly and PDF

The Technology

The Global Re-Fuel furnace (PLF-500) by Wayne Combustion Systems was installed on two farms in 2014 as demonstration projects for the Farm Manure-to-Energy Initiative. The furnace uses poultry litter as a fuel and was designed to deliver heat via hot air to poultry housing.

The Farms

Mark Rohrer's poultry houses in Lancaster County, PA, are on land that has been farmed by his family for generations. Mr. Rohrer owns two broiler houses with a solar panel array to offset the poultry operation's electricity usage. He purchases propane independently and, except for a modest contribution from the integrator, pays for heating out-of-pocket. (See upper slideshow)

Mike Weaver grows broiler chickens in two poultry houses in Pendleton County, WV, that are retrofitted with energy efficiency improvements. His farm includes a pond, 80 acres of pastures, and upland wildlife habitat conservation. The farm produces approximately 300 tons of excess litter every year that are stored in the covered litter shed and sold off of the farm. (See lower slideshow)

Performance Evaluation

The Global Re-Fuel combustion system was evaluated for technical, environmental, and financial performance. An overview of the findings is available in the main body of the 2016 Final Report. Details are in Appendix A.

The report includes an evaluation of air emissions from three thermal manure-to-energy systems, as well as the potential for transporting and marketing the ash co-product as a crop fertilizer.

Related: Introduction to Thermal Technologies...

More Manure-Based Energy Case Studies


Farm Manure Energy Initiative logoThis case study was funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), the USDA, U.S. EPA, and Chesapeake Bay Funders Network. The views and conclusions contained in materials related to the Farm Manure-to-Energy Initiative are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions or policies of NFWF, the USDA, U.S. EPA, or Chesapeake Bay Funders Network. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute endorsement by project funders.

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USDA / NIFA

This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.