Zero-Emission pumps turning methane into renewable natural gas


A large meat producer and food-processing company with renewable-energy engineers created the project of turning manure into renewable natural gas at their farm sites. Waste went to a covered bay, where the decomposing manure produced methane, which was to be scrubbed and ultimately fed into natural gas pipelines.

One small and crucial step in the process was removing the watery fluid produced in the gaseous conversion and collected in several dozen underground sumps.

The project’s sumps were not served by trenched pneumatic or electric power. And with both parties committed to zero-emission goals, the question was how best to pump the sumps.

Solar Piston Pumps helping turn waste into renewable natural gas

Solar-Powered Pumps

The answer was Blackhawk’s Apollo Solar Piston Pump, a simple, non-polluting, durable and cost-effective model that pumps virtually anything that flows. Site engineers installed on-off level-controls that allowed the Apollos to pump to the sump bottom.

The pump consists of three components:

  1. The piston-pump downhole, patterned after oilfield pump jacks, the industry standard for reliability
  2. The Scotch-yoke linear-rod, above-well driver, with only four moving parts
  3. The solar panels, which does not emit onsite greenhouse gases. And solar power is free.


Site managers report that the Piston Pumps have proven efficient and dependable in the Alternative Energy application, with no carbon emissions and easy servicing, with no pump pulling required. The alternative energy gas produced by the project is pipeline quality and provided to users.

“Blackhawk is at the forefront of developing new uses for reliable piston-pumping microtechnology, from alternative energy to pipeline drip-leg sump,” - Mark Bertane, Blackhawk principal 

Apollo top-head-drive piston pumps are available with solar, battery and AC-electric power options. The pumps can be customised with specialised materials of construction appropriate for site-specific requirements.

Dynapumps are an authorised distributor for Blackhawk, which have revolutionised low-flow reciprocating piston pumps and are the standard for reliability and durability in landfills, remediation sites and difficult pumping environments, providing a long-life economy.

For more information and to request a quote, call 1300 788 579 or email

Contact Dynapumps for complete pump solutions for the life of the project

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