To the Moo-n: Japan plans to travel to the moon using cow dung

by alex

Japan strives to develop sustainable space solutions using cow manure

Japan's space industry opened an unusual new chapter when a startup tested a prototype rocket engine powered by fuel derived exclusively from an abundant local source: cow dung.

In an experiment conducted in a hangar in the rural northern town of Taiki, the engine emitted blue-orange flames 10-15 meters for about 15 seconds. The test confirmed the performance of the engine and its high power.

The fuel was produced entirely from gas obtained from cow manure from two local dairy farms.

To the Moo-n: Япония планирует отправиться на Луну на коровьем навозе

«We do this not only because it is good for the environment, but also because it can be very economical and is a high-performance, clean fuel. I don't think it's an exaggeration to suggest that this practice could be scaled up around the world, – said the head of Interstellar Technologies Takahiro Inagawa.

Interstellar hopes to use this fuel to launch satellites into space. Through a partnership with Air Water, Interstellar Technologies was able to team up with local farmers who have the necessary equipment to convert cow manure into biogas. It was possible to obtain high-quality rocket fuel from biomethane.

«Raw materials obtained within our own region have very great potential. In the event of a change in the international situation, it is important that Japan has a source of energy that is already available&rdash; said Tomogiro Nishikawa, Air Water engineer.

To the Moo-n: Япония планирует отправиться на Луну на коровьем навозе

Cow dung biomethane technology is already being used in a variety of sectors, including the transport industry and residential heating. The introduction of this type of fuel into rocket engines – a new stage in the use of renewable energy sources and reducing the negative impact on the environment. Air Water's biomethane is already used by the local dairy industry and other factories to heat local homes and power trucks and ships. It helps reduce the environmental footprint of agriculture, which is responsible for 14% of greenhouse gas emissions, according to Greenpeace. Burning biogas also releases greenhouse gases, but so does if it is left to naturally decompose while runoff from livestock pollutes waterways and soil.

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Among the farmers participating in the program, – Eji Mizushita, who raises about 900 cows producing more than 40 tons of manure daily. His farm has an industrial system for automatically collecting waste, fermenting it and turning it into biogas, fertilizer and processing into animal bedding. «I'm excited at the thought that our manure could be used to launch a rocket, – he said.

This step in the development of the space industry will help Japan create more independent energy sources. It is also an important contribution to the development of clean energy sources that can serve as an example and inspiration for other countries. All this makes the testing of a prototype rocket engine powered by biomethane from cow dung an event that can be called a breakthrough in space engineering and environmental technology.

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