The problem of what to do with an increasing amount of chicken litter has been solved.

In a project carried out by Gas Technology Institute, it has been found that the litter can be gasified to produce hydrogen and generate electricity by using a solid fuel cell.

The project, funded by the US Department of Agriculture, Earth Resources, GTI and the University of Georgia, found gasification has the potential to provide a cost-effective, environmentally benign disposal option for the litter while also providing heat, power, fuel – eg hydrogen - and fertilizer.

Traditionally litter has been used for fertilizer as it is rich in nutrients, but a rise in poultry farms, a decrease in the availability of land and potential negative environmental impacts are creating concerns about this disposal method.

Francis Lau, director of corporate development at the GTI, said: \\$quot;Commercialisation and implementation of such a modular technology has the potential to generate on-site power and heat from a renewable source of energy economically while addressing environmental problems caused by traditional disposal practices.

\\$quot;Also, chicken litter can replace fossil fuels currently used to provide heat in poultry farms, thus avoiding net generation of carbon dioxide. GTI is pursuing the development and commercialisation of this technology.\\$quot;