By Stephanie Raygoza
Revolutionizing the way companies and facilities dispose of everyday waste and materials, Nevada-based company Ecologico-Logic is unveiling and demonstrating its machine prototype, the Muncher, as an environmentally friendly alternative to waste disposal.
Ecologico-Logic consists of seven individuals with strong backgrounds in business, manufacturing, mechanical engineering and environmental science. Dr. James Stein, acting secretary, is also a mathematics professor at Cal State Long Beach. The company’s primary manufacture facility is located in Gardena where they also host their demonstrations.
“It’s a very new marketing effort,” said Mohammed Memon, chief operations officer and co-founder. “We’re also looking to go into additionally large commercial landscapers– companies that bring in a lot of green waste.”
The Muncher prototype uses an aerobic digestion method that is a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes. It reduces waste and transforms the residue into saleable byproducts such as liquid effluent, solid cake, and carbon dioxide.
“Altogether, it was about a 15-year developmental process to bring it to where it is today. The current prototype is over a million dollars in development,” Memon said.
The waste-disposal system is based on an earlier concept that was developed to treat contaminated water systems. The team adapted the process for solid-waste handling in 2009 and came up with the prototype a year later.
“It’s all working with the nitrogen cycle. It’s all essentially the same nitrogen cycle so we just adapted the process, the machinery, to handle solid material instead,” Memon said.
What sets the Muncher apart from other waste-disposal processes is its ability to run all organic material through it and then convert that into compost without the liability of other processors.
“For example, you take like a 30- to 45-day composting process. We reduce it to hours, and that material, once it comes out of our system, is immediately ready for use. You do not have to have an additional storage period to prepare it,” Memon said.
Additional features to the Muncher include cleanup of such toxic chemicals as PCBs, dioxins, and nitrates and the fact that it releases no hazardous gases or harmful byproducts.
“The prototype is a concept proving system. We show the whole process from waste entering the pretreatment system to the digestion system to the output system to show potential buyers and for educational purposes, as well to show that this is a viable science. It fits an environmentally conscious mindset,” Memon said.
The demonstrations take about 30 minutes and can process about five to eight tons a day. The eventual target system will take 50 tons a day for disposal entities and can go bigger.
“We put waste through our machine, and 30 minutes later, you have a neutralized compost that does not have any foul odor anymore,” Memon said. “We have actually a material reduction of about 80 percent from what we started with, so the whole point there is that you’re diverting waste from landfills. We’re helping achieve that.”
The company is entirely self-funded and currently looking for investors and grant funding. However, its main goal now is to educate others.
“What we want to do right now is raise awareness. We want people to see that there are alternatives out there to our current methods of waste processing and handling,” Memon said. “We have an amazing, environmentally friendly green technology here that we want people to consider using in their communities.”