Renewable Energy Resource Project For Haiti

Renewable Energy Resource Project For Haiti

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RENEWABLE ENERGY RESOURCE PROJECT FOR HAITI,   March 4, 1991   ADAPTABLE USE OF ENERGY IN HAITI  SUBSTITUTION OF WOOD CHARCOAL BY CONVERSION OF CELLULOSE PRODUCTS FOR PRODUCTION OF WOOD WASTE BRIQUETTES


Without making immense changes toward production and utilization of firewood and charcoal, there will be great reductions in agricultural activities in Haiti. As an end result, Haitian will have to resort to importing costly petroleum-based fuel such as kerosene and bottled gas for energy consumption.

In 1985, the annual charcoal consumption in Port-au-Prince was estimated at 120,000 metric tones, and outside of Port-au-Prince at 186,000 metric tones per year.

SIMPLE AND INDIGENOUS SOLUTION

Firewood briquettes would increase agricultural activities and introduce appropriate technology to the countryside of Haiti. Firewood briquettes will be as comparable in quality, and cheaper in price than the Haitian charcoal. It will also satisfy the following criteria: easy ignition, satisfactory heating capabilities, and availability.

Raw wooded material or other cellulose waste product in Haiti are reduced to a fine consistency and extruded under pressure to form logs and briquettes after the material is treated and dried. Natural resin released from the wood during the heating and pressuring process become a natural adhesive to help bring the product into a solid potent chunk of energy without the use of additives.

Research and development is essential:

  • To introduce fast growing crop trees in the most efficient and economical way for briquettes production through appropriate technology. This new technology will also improve agricultural capabilities, create more jobs, conserve energy, and reduce Haitian dependency on expensive foreign fuels.
  • To improve wood cooking stove utilizing indigenous clay. This will result in conservation of heat during the cooking process, production of clay cooking stove, and reduction of importation of iron and other metals.
COMPARATIVE STUDY OF HEAT PRODUCTION OF HAITIAN

CHARCOAL WITH OTHER FUELS

The data summarized in the table below are results of calorimetric studies performed at the Acadiana Research Laboratory of the University of Southwestern Louisiana, as well as results from the literature on heats of combustion of various fuel products.

MATERIAL HEAT OF COMBUSTION

KCAL/KG 
BTU/lb
Bagasse (Compressed)
4,463
8,027
Rice Chaff (Compressed)
4,871
8,761
Propane (Bottled Gas)
11,472
20,633
Haitian Charcoal
5,974
10,745
Kerosene
12,392
22,288

Samples were compressed by grinding the material to a particle size of 20 or less as measured by appropriate sifter. The specimen were allowed to dry at room temperature until 10%-15% moisture remained, then they were compressed by a 25,000 lb press into pellets of 1 cm diameter by 2mm thick. The heat of combustion was then measured with a Parr Instrument Oxygen Calorimeter, using benzoic acid a standard.

Caution should be exercised when evaluating the heat content of Haitian Charcoal in comparison with other fibrous material. As much as two-thirds of the mass of Haitian charcoal is lost during its conversion from the wood status. Therefore, a proportional amount of heat content relative to the original wood mass has also been lost in the conversion process.

Dr. Davy L. Bernard (1) in collaboration with Aldy Castor MD (2) did all sample preparation and calorimetry at the Acadiana Research Laboratory of the University of Southwestern Louisiana.


  1. Dr Davy L. Bernard is an experimental physicist with considerable experience and a corresponding publishing record in the area of Applied Physics, Medical Physics, and Health Physics
  2. Aldy Castor MD, a practicing Obstetrician & Gynecologist in Lafayette, Louisiana, is the president of the Haitian Resource Development Foundation (HRDF)
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The Haitian Resource Development Foundation prioritizes programs that enable and empower various Haitian locales to further personal and collective independence. Engaging in a range of programs over 20 years, the HRDF continues a commitment to providing measurable results for program beneficiaries and program benefactors. Working with multiple international partners from North America and Europe, the HRDF is committed to fundamental improvements in Haitian villages to ensure greater economic vitality in the near future.