In early 2024 Aalto student Timon Schapals contacted me regarding my availability for a biogas lecture and workshop. When it comes to biogas I always have time - it is just a question of funding. 

Aalto University has a program called the Sustainability Action Booster. Timon and his colleagues wrote the application for the Sustainability Action Booster - and got funded!

I started compiling an appealing presentation right away. The lecture / workshop was scheduled for the 29th of April. Two days before I started packing the car. I went for all the necessary pipes and Uniseals that are required to build a SolarC³ITIES IBC digester. Unfortunately all those pipes where from an discontinued digester, therefore our car smelled like a cow stable.

Hotel and sushi

Since the lecture should start at 9:00 o'clock with coffee and breakfast we decided to book a hotel close by. When we arrived we got lucky because we got the "Lucky you" room, which is a special room at the Heymo hotel. The Heymo is actually a self-service hotel. Besides not having stuff other than what they call a "fixer" (reminded me of Cyberpunk 2077) - they have a cleaning robot. 

We enjoyed our stay - bath and sauna and had take-away sushi. The "Lucky you" room is the ideal place to relax. Yet at night I got up and came to the conclusion that I had to change my presentation. 

Biogas 101 Lecture

With my last minute alterations included I was confident the presentation will appeal to the audience. Instead of starting with an inspirational photo series and also answering the question "why biogas" - I started with the DIY biogas practitioners I learned from: Prof TH Culhane, Kathy Puffer, Janice Kelsey, Bob "Biogas" Hamburg, Taha Mahed and Martin Funk. If you stand on the shoulders of giants then credit them! I then delved into biogas composition, gas characteristics, micro organisms, stages of digestion, digester types - and of course the "ILY" sign. :) 

IBC biogas workshop

The workshop took place in the FabLab of Aalto Design Factory. I was so intrigued by what they are offering there that I thought for some time about enrolling for a program. Laser cutters, large scale 3d printers, welding, - and of course all the tools. But let's not forget: all the amazing students! When you work with younger people than yourself you realize at one point there is hope that we can get through climate change. 

We cut the holes into the IBC, put the Uniseals in place, sealed them and then pushed the pipes in. Voila!

Thank you to Timon and his colleagues for an amazing day!


All gallery photos below by Ronja Tammenpää