Comment 2SSZ Re: Possible sources


Mysterious Mars Methane: Curiosity Sees No Sign


Possible sources (Score: 1)

by on 2014-09-22 11:36 (#2SRB)

It would be really exciting to find some form of life there, but maybe they just aren't in the right spot.

As far as harvesting methane...We currently keep much livestock, and I hear rant about how cows are killing the ozone. Can't we collect that bovine flatulence somehow? It might be easier and less expensive than getting it from a neighboring planet, and it doesn't seem like most in our society will be excluding beef from our diet anytime soon. Why not get the most out of the cows as possible? I guess PETA would would be like, "THAT'S THEIR GAS, YOU GIVE IT BACK TO THE COWS!!!"

Re: Possible sources (Score: 1)

by on 2014-09-22 17:47 (#2SSB)

It's quite possible to harvest all the excrement, put it into enclosed tanks, and use the methane to power generators and the like rather than just allowing it to escape into the atmosphere. Such projects seem to be more common with pigs than cows, probably because the former is so toxic and unpleasant to neighbors as well.

My question with cows is: What percentage of their methane emissions comes from decomposition of the solid waste? If significant portions of it is directly belched or farted into the air, it's going to be quite impractical to capture. Methane is lighter than air, so completely enclosing them inside a very tight-envelope building would work, but it would be extremely expensive to do.

Re: Possible sources (Score: 1)

by on 2014-09-23 02:28 (#2SSZ)

I heard that most of the methane is generated in their gut and is expelled as burps rather than farts, a roof and partial walls with a gap at the bottom would probably do to collect most of the methane since it's lighter than air, then concentrate and compress into storage tanks.

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