Diesel Exhaust Fertilizer System
Diesel tractor exhaust injection into soil
sequesters CO2 ( 400 HP = 1100 Kg / hectare ), eliminates
fertilizers, improves growth.
November 1, 2009
A farmer's field of dreams buries
climate change war
by Carmel Egan
A BATTLE is raging beneath the bobbing heads of Ian Linklater's
wheat crop in the red, loamy soils of Gol Gol.
In this break-your-heart farming land near the Murray River, north
of Mildura, the enemies are drought, nutrient depletion, salt and
rising farming costs.
The battle's unlikely heroes are Mr Linklater and his
400-horsepower, oxygen-sucking, diesel-guzzling, carbon-spewing
International debate rages over the cost and plausibility of
reducing greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power stations
by pumping carbon underground.
But Mr Linklater is literally ploughing ahead, injecting his
tractor's fossil fuel exhaust fumes directly into the ground,
where they enhance the biochemical interaction between plants and
soil microbes. And it seems his home-grown version of carbon
sequestration, introduced in 2007, is getting results, with this
year's crop, aided by better rainfall, his best since 2001.
"It might not seem that emissions from one tractor could do a lot,
but per hectare it emits 1100 kilos of carbon," Mr Linklater says.
Adapting methods developed by Canadian farmer Gary Lewis, of
BioAgtive Technologies, Mr Linklater spent $20,000 customising
equipment that cools the tractor's fumes to 30 degrees then expels
them into the soil as gas fertiliser when he sows his crop.
His trials, which are being replicated in Canada, Britain and
South Africa, are gaining global attention and are now the focus
of scientific research. ''When I heard about it, I listened and
the science of it seemed to make sense, but with fertiliser costs
at about $1200 to $1500 a tonne, the economics of it got me into
gear,'' Mr Linklater says.
At today's prices it would have cost him $500,000 in phosphorous
and nitrogen fertilisers to prepare 3900 hectares for planting.
But in the two years since he and his sons began trialling the new
technique, no fertiliser has been applied. The saving is enough to
wipe a healthy chunk off the debt that he, like many
drought-stricken farmers, has racked up through years of meagre
rain and below-break-even wheat prices.
Political debate continues over inclusion of agriculture in
Australia's emissions trading scheme, but Mr Linklater says
farmers have nothing to fear from such a scheme. ''It's coming
anyway, regardless of what happens in Australia. Governments
around the world are moving ahead with carbon taxes and we will
all have to pay.''
The Federal Opposition has proposed amendments permanently
removing agriculture's methane emissions from an emissions trading
scheme while allowing farmers to make money through carbon credits
earned from replanting trees and storing carbon in the soil.
The Government has delayed a decision on agriculture, which
accounts for 18 per cent of the nation's greenhouse gases, until
May 14, 2012
Recycling Diesel Emissions for Farm
Marian Lyman Kirst
The summer of 2007 was one of the driest and hottest on record
in Montana. Fields withered along the state's arid Hi-Line. But in
the small, north-central town of Rudyard, one emerald-green
cornfield stood out amid the brown. The field was a test plot
grown with a technology that only a fed-up farmer could have
invented: a system that turns diesel tractor exhaust into plant
That farmer is Canadian Gary Lewis, a trained mechanic and the
inventor of Bio-Agtive Emissions Technology, a tractor add-on that
recycles diesel emissions into fertilizer.
He came up with the idea back in 2001, when despite his careful
applications of pricey fertilizer, his timothy hay fields failed
to grow. Lewis, who has a wife and five kids, was devastated.
He believed that years of dousing his fields with chemical-heavy
fertilizer had made the soil too salty, less biologically active
and unable to retain moisture. So he decided to jump off the
chemical treadmill and find another way to tend his plants, which
on their luxury diets had grown lazy.
Lewis, who looks like an "American Gothic" version of John Elway,
has the tenacity of a champion quarterback. He spent the next year
poring over plant-science textbooks like Horst Marschner's Mineral
Nutrition of Higher Plants. Armed with a new understanding of soil
and plant health, Lewis used his automotive skills to implement
what he fondly calls his "crazy idea": harnessing the carbon
dioxide, nitrogen gas and heavy metals -- zinc, copper, magnesium
and iron -- in tractor exhaust and using them as fertilizer.
His invention cools the exhaust, runs it through a metal tubing
system, and feeds it into the tractor's air seeder. Those
emissions are then injected into the ground along with the seeds.
Lewis believes this stimulates soil microbes and beneficial root
fungi, whose activity liberates nutrients already in the ground
and increases the plants' ability to absorb both nutrients and
"My tractor became a living thing, burying all of its energy to
feed things in the soil –– bacteria and fungi and
micro-invertebrates," he enthuses.
The Bio-Agtive process also coats the seeds with emissions, which
Lewis believes protects them against soil pathogens. Some of the
minor emissions from diesel engines, such as formaldehyde, are the
same chemicals used in protective seed treatments, he says.
More than 100 farmers in the U.S. and Canada have purchased
Bio-Agtive through Lewis' company, N/C Quest Inc. But like any
innovation that promises revolution, the system has its skeptics.
"People thought I was burying poisonous gas in the soil!" says
Lewis. Admittedly, diesel emissions are far from healthy for
people. Yet Lewis contends they are fine for plants.
To help prove it, he enlisted the support of Montana State
University Northern's Bio-Energy Center, which began testing
Bio-Agtive on spring wheat crops last year with the help of a
Montana Research and Commercialization Board grant. Though
preliminary, the results are promising: The center didn't detect
any dangerous heavy metals in the grains or tissues of
emissions-treated plants, and, after one season of testing, found
higher yields and increased soil phosphorous levels in those,
compared to fertilized fields. What's more, the acidic condensate
associated with the cooled emissions helped reduce the test plots'
alkaline soil (common in the arid West) to more neutral levels.
The center is also testing Bio-Agtive with biofuels like camelina
biodiesel, the use of which could reduce farmers' dependence on
both fossil fuels and fertilizer.
Canadian soil ecologist Jill Clapperton has spent the last five
years investigating Bio-Agtive's effects on soil, seeds and
plants, working both with the Bio-Energy Center and the National
Research Council of Canada.
"When a farmer uses Bio-Agtive," says Clapperton, the seeds
"become extremely coated with soot and exhaust emissions … they
get very, very black." But the coating does not seem to reduce
germination rates, as she had suspected it might. She also looked
for negative effects on soil health -- respiration, the microbial
community -- but found none.
Lewis, she says, may be correct that emissions-coated seeds are
better able to fend off potentially pathogenic fungi, but she
stresses that more research is required. Clapperton's less sure,
however, about Bio-Agtive's potential as a fertilizer. There are
clear differences between the control and emissions-treated plots,
she says. "But whether (those changes) relate to Gary's theory as
he sees it is another question." Montana State University
agronomist David Wichman worries Lewis' too-good-to-be-true tech
is just that. He did not see yield increases in his research trial
of Bio-Agtive on winter wheat, though he acknowledges the testing
was limited in scope. He cautions farmers to wait for scientific
proof before spending $30,000-$55,000 on a Bio-Agtive system.
Lewis responds that the price is "about the same as one truckload
of fertilizer." Indeed, small-grain farmer and Bio-Agtive
distributor Craig Henke of Chester, Mont., says the system saves
him $50,000 a year in phosphate fertilizer costs. He still applies
some nitrogen to his plants but says he has seen a four-fold
increase in soil phosphorous levels since he started using
Bio-Agtive six years ago.
For Lewis, it's all about helping farm families gain some
independence and security.
"When you are addicted to something, it's hard to take the risk to
quit. But the best thing with this technology is that, in the
gambling game of farming, you are keeping money in your pocket.
Bio-Agtive Gathering 2013 Alberta Canada
PO Box 2410
AB T0K 1W0
Dr. Jill Clapperton Speaks
Dr. Jill Clapperton, formerly with Agriculture Canada's Lethbridge
Research Station for 16 years and now the principal of EarthSpirit
Land Resource Consulting, leads the way in trying to find out
exactly how exhaust does what it does in the soil.
Here's what she had to say about our Bio-AgtiveTM Emissions
Technology at our 2008 convention:
"It works, and its my job to find out how it works. We will
be able to tell you exactly what's happening in the soil in 3-5
"Gary's great goal is to make sure that people are growing food
that is really good for them, and that they're doing good things
for the soil - that they're taking care of their soil so they can
grow great food."
"...what is really nice about using the exhaust is that we're not
using too much phosphorous."
Dr. Jill has an extensive ongoing research program.
What has been researched?
What's going on in the soil as a result of our injection of
exhaust emissions? The summer of 2007 saw the first real
scientific research into our Bio-Agtive™ Emissions
Technology. In two separate arms-length experiments
co-funded by the National Research Council of Canada and N/C Quest
Inc. (one in Alberta and one in Manitoba), two eminent Canadian
agricultural scientists headed teams that seeded and monitored
test plots with various crops, fertilizer and exhaust emissions
treatments in two totally different areas of the country.
Unfortunately the Alberta experiment supervised by Dr. Jill
Clapperton was completely hailed out and yielded only limited
data. Dr. Clapperton was, however, able to review and assess
the research data, crop yields, soil tests, tissue tests, and
anecdotal evidence collected elsewhere in 2007. With regard
to the 2006 and 2007 yields of our licensees, she states that,
while we may not know exactly what is going on below ground,
"plants are indicators of what's going on in the soil, so plant
success is always the first step [in proving the value of new
The Manitoba experiment was a resounding success despite the
extreme drought conditions in that area. What our scientific
team found was "agronomy test data to show that exhaust stimulated
soil nutrient release and uptake by both canola and wheat",
according to Dr. Loraine Bailey.
Continued research has been carried out in 2009/2010 with Dr.
Clapperton and research summary for 2009 was released showing
Yield Data in Stome, AB
Montana State University Northern, Havre MT have a grant for the
State of Montana USA to examine the quality of exhaust emissions,
and how much exhaust is placed with the seed. A further grant
offered trials in 2011 that have also received good results in
determining how much life is in the soil before seeding, after
seeding, after harvest with treatments as; check, diesel,
bio-diesel, fertilizer. The scientific results have been published
and the report is viewable under "Montana State University
Among the latest in research is or “Africa Project” lead by Mick
Dennis of Field Master Ltd. in Arusha Tanzania. After entering the
African Enterprise Challenge of 250 contestants, Bio-Agtive™
placed first and was granted $400,000 to do further research in
Tanzania on the technology. Updates will be continually posted as
we get them!
No funding or grants have been received yet in Australia but we
look forward to running separate independent trials at future
field days in 2012 year, we will keep it updated.
Our Bio-Agtive™ Emissions Technology (BAET) is the
culmination of more than nine years of experimentation by Mr. Gary
Lewis on his own farm. His worldwide Patent Pending
technology has two major components; the Bio-Agtive Emissions
System (BAES) which is the mechanical system that captures,
processes, and injects the exhaust emissions into the soil, and
the Bio-Agtive Emissions Method (BAEM) - Gary's unique theory of
how the soil and the plants growing in it interact biochemically,
and are enhanced by, exhaust emissions. One part of the BAE
Technology is useless without the other:
The BAE System: because every producer's equipment isn't the same
our distributor in your area will supply and install it in your
farm shop to fit your equipment and your crop needs. That
way you understand the inner workings of your BAE System.
The BAE Method: your distributor will spend the time
necessary to teach you how to use our technology properly to
maximize your crop yields while minimizing your fossil fuel and
fertilizer inputs, and ongoing advice will always be just a phone
Our quest is to help agriculture to understand and practice a new
way of Nitrogen and Carbon cycle management.
N/C Quest Inc is the parent company that license’s the Bio-Agtive™
Technology Method to farms at the farm gate around the world! We
have over 150 farms in Canada, Jamaica, USA, Australia, England,
South Africa, Tanzania, Kazakhstan and Japan are now licensed to
use our Bio-Agtive™ Emissions Technology (BAET) with our
distributor network continuing to grow worldwide each year.
A distributor in your area would be more than happy to talk to you
at your own farm, tell you their experiences, and help you become
a better producer while improving your bottom line! For a
distributor contact in your area, you can find under the
Distributors and Products tab or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Bio-Agtive™ System Kits
All prices are pre-tax, and payable in currency of the country you
reside in, however prices may vary depending on your country, size
and make of your tractor/equipment. The total costs of a
Bio-Agtive™ System fitted to a 250HP-600HP tractor is estimated to
between $40,000 and $57,000 depending on unit and installation
We want our users to be satisfied and have safer operation
with all their equipment, especially with new technology. If you
are wanting full benefits of using the technology to be achieved
then we recommend dealing with only NCQ Sales Represensatives
found here on the NCQ Distributor list - For Your Safety and Ours!
Bio-Agtive™ Patent Pending
N/C Quest Inc. has worldwide "Patent Pending" status on all
aspects of the Bio-Agtive™ Emissions Technology to protect our
Licensees, our Distributors, our Manufacturers and you - our
potential customer. Our low initial Technology Use Fee
(license) to use the BAE Technology is purposely kept that way
because we want our company to grow farmer to farmer, with
Licensees becoming Distributors and Manufacturers - neighbours
And as a Licensee of the Bio-Agtive™ Emissions Technology from N/C
Quest Inc. you get two priceless advantages. First, you have
access to the ongoing collaborative research into our
revolutionary Bio-Agtive™ Emissions Method. We will always
guide you with the latest advice about the BAEM via our website,
online web seminars, emails, and alerts - as well as traditional
Second, you have access to The CO2Xchange™, our Patent Pending
carbon sponsorship program that lets enlightened consumers around
the world sponsor you to practice more sustainable farming
practices while you clean their air for them. Forget carbon
offsets (they're next to worthless) and join N/C Quest Inc. as we
help agriculture help the planet breathe easier via the "CO2X"!
Fertilizing system and method by
extracting nitrogen compounds from combustion exhaust gases
A fertilizer system is provided using extraction of nitrogen
compounds and other plant nutrients from combustion exhaust gases,
and which is particularly suited for use with an agricultural
irrigation system or engine driven plant care equipment including
self-propelled tractors, mowers and the like. The system includes
an exhaust chamber in communication with the motor driving a pump
of the system for receiving the exhaust gases therethrough. Water
is injected into the exhaust chamber for mixing with the exhaust
so that the steam being formed absorbs various nitrogen compounds
and other plant nutrients from the surrounding hot exhaust gases.
The steam is subsequently condensed in a condensing chamber from
which condensate is collected and dispensed into the inlet of the
pump with water circulated therethrough.; The water is thus
enriched with various nitrogen compounds and other plant nutrients
absorbed from the exhaust gases before being dispensed to a
planted area by an irrigation system or a sprayer attachment on a
self-propelled tractor, mower and the like.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention relates to a method and system for
fertilizing using extraction of nitrogen compounds and plant
nutrients from combustion exhaust gases, and more particularly to
such a system or method when used for extracting nitrogen
compounds and plant nutrients from exhaust gases, for example, in
either an irrigation pump motor of an agricultural irrigation
system for subsequent use of the nitrogen compounds in irrigation
water of the irrigation system or in a driving motor for driving
or propelling plant care equipment including self-propelled
tractors, mowers, sprayers and the like.
 Various nitrogen compounds and plant nutrients are known to
be desirable for fertilizing various plants, in particular crops.
Repeated adding of fertilizer to crops however can be time
consuming and costly to both purchase and distribute to the
 While forms of nitrogen are known to exist in large
quantities in exhaust gases of combustion engines, these forms of
nitrogen however are typically harmful to the environment and of
little use as a fertilizer.
 U.S. Pat. No. 6,446,385 to Crutcher describes a greenhouse
system in which a gas turbine provides heat and power to maintain
the greenhouse. An exhaust gas treatment system receives the hot
gas from the turbine to remove and convert harmful nitrogen
compounds while a fertilization system makes use of the converted
nitrogen compounds as fertilizer for feeding the plants of the
greenhouse. The method of extraction described refers to European
patent application No. 97117779.5. The gas treatment system
however requires consumption of an alkaline earth compound to
react with nitric acid which is formed to then form an alkaline
earth nitrate in an aqueous form. The resulting calcium nitrate or
magnesium nitrate which may be produced are harmful to the plants
and soil when distributed in excess quantities and accordingly
this system would require careful monitoring so that only limited
amounts of the fertilizer compound generated by the gas treatment
system are in fact distributed to the plants through irrigation
thereof in the greenhouse. This method converts NOx to nitric acid
to be scrubbed out with earth alkaline in an aqueous effluent,
leaving carbon dioxide in the exhaust stream to raise the carbon
dioxide levels in the greenhouse.
 According to one aspect of the present invention there is
provided a fertilizer system for extracting nitrogen compounds and
other plant nutrients from exhaust gases of a combustion device,
the system comprising:
an exhaust chamber having an inlet and an outlet for receiving the
exhaust gases from the combustion device there through;
a water injector for injecting water into the exhaust chamber for
mixing with the exhaust gases to form a water vapor;
a condensing chamber for condensing said water vapor exiting the
exhaust chamber with the exhaust gases to form a condensate
a collector for collecting said condensate solution from the
characterised in that said condensate solution being formed
comprises water and one or more compounds selected from the group
including nitrate, nitrite and ammonium. Other useful nutrients to
the plants which are extracted include sulphur phosphorus,
magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and carbon dioxide as a carbonic
 According to a second aspect of the present invention there
is provided a method of fertilizing by extracting nitrogen
compounds and other plant nutrients from exhaust gases of a
combustion device, the method comprising:
operating a combustion device to produce exhaust gases;
directing the exhaust gases through an exhaust chamber in
communication with the combustion device;
injecting water into the exhaust chamber for mixing with the
exhaust gases to form a water vapor;
condensing said water vapor exiting the exhaust chamber with the
exhaust gases to form a condensate solution comprising water and
one or more compounds selected from the group including nitrate,
nitrite and ammonium; and
collecting said condensate solution from the condensing chamber.
Other useful plant nutrients which may be included in the
condensate solution as a result of the above steps include:
sulphur, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and carbon
dioxide as a carbonic acid.
 According to further aspects of the present invention there
are provided fertilizer solutions comprising the condensate
solution formed by the system and method noted above.
 The use of water and exhaust mixed together and
subsequently condensed produces a solution of water with nitrate,
nitrite, ammonium, sulphur, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron,
copper and carbon dioxide as a carbonic acid. These are useful to
plants when watered therewith without concern of being toxic to
the plants when left to operate continuously from an irrigation
pump motor in an irrigation system for example.
 As described in our method of extraction, complete
conversion to nitric acid is not required as water will scrub out
NH4, NO2, NO3, and other plant nutrients such as sulphur,
phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and carbon dioxide as a
carbonic acid. This would carry the CO2 to the crop canopy to feed
the crop and/or be stored in the soil as a carbon sink. NO2
(nitrite) will feed soil bacteria and nitrite reductase (NiR)
which transforms nitrite to ammonia and the nitrate bacteria will
change nitrites into nitrates. Sulphur dioxide can be used by the
crop canopy. Sulphur converts to sulphate in the soil for root up
take when combined with water in which sulphuric acid is formed
 The use of an exhaust chamber in combination with a water
injector permits nitrogen and nutrients to be readily collected
from exhaust gases of commonly available combustion devices,
including internal combustion engines and the like, at minimal
cost and effort as the nitrogen compounds available in the exhaust
gases are normally considered useless and therefore typically
wasted. Collection of nitrogen compounds and plant nutrients in a
condensate is particularly useful in an agricultural irrigation
system as compounds are ready for immediate use with little or no
effort on the part of the operator of the irrigation system.
Further benefits to injecting water into the exhaust chamber for
mixing with the irrigation water include preheating the irrigation
water with heat from the exhaust gases and reducing undesirable
emissions in the exhaust gases due to the mixing of the gases with
water vapor in the exhaust chamber.
 There may be provided a distribution system for
distributing the condensate solution to a planted area, for
example in irrigation system or a sprayer attachment on a
self-propelled tractor or mower and the like.
 The condensate solution may be fully and continuously
diverted to the distribution system comprising an irrigation
system or a sprayer system on self-propelled equipment as it moves
over the crop or area of application.
 In a preferred embodiment, only water is added to the
exhaust gases to form the condensate solution.
 The combustion device may comprise an internal combustion
engine, however other devices known to consume fossil fuels to
produce products of combustion may be useful in certain instances.
 The distribution system in a first embodiment comprises
plant care equipment, for example a self-propelled tractor or
mower, such that the combustion device comprises an engine driving
the plant care equipment.
 Alternatively, the distribution system comprises a crop
irrigation system, wherein the collector is coupled to communicate
with an inlet of an irrigation pump for dispensing the condensate
solution into irrigation water passing through the irrigation
pump. The combustion device in this instance would comprise a
motor driving the irrigation pump.
 The water injector may be coupled to an outlet of the
irrigation pump whereby the water injected into the exhaust
chamber comprises a portion of the water pumped by the irrigation
 The condensing chamber may include a condenser core which
is cooled by irrigation water passing therethrough or other heat
 There may be provided a shut-off valve coupled in series
between the collector and the distribution system which is
arranged to be open only when the distribution system is
 The water injector may include a float valve coupled in
series therewith, the float valve being supported in the
condensing chamber such that the water injector is arranged to
inject water into the exhaust chamber in response to a level of
condensate in the condensing chamber falling below a prescribed
level of condensate.
 There may be provided a catalytic converter coupled to an
inlet of the exhaust chamber for receiving the exhaust gases
therethrough prior to the exhaust chamber. The type of catalyst
depends on type of fuel used or desired oxidation.
 There may be provided an air pump for injecting air into
the exhaust gases near the water injector to assist in converting
harmful emissions to more desirable compounds.
 There may be provided high voltage arc means for generating
an electric arc in a passage through which the exhaust gases pass
also to assist in converting harmful emissions to more desirable
 There may be provided an electrical field generator
surrounding a passage through which the exhaust gases pass or a
portion of water from the injector may be diverted to an
electrolysis device before injection into the exhaust gases for
injecting hydrogen and oxygen into the exhaust gases to further
promote conversion of harmful emissions to more desirable
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 In the accompanying drawings, which illustrate exemplary
embodiments of the present invention:
 FIG. 1 is a schematic view of the fertilizer system for
extraction of nitrogen compounds and other plant nutrients as it
is used in an irrigation system.
 FIG. 2 is a flow chart diagram illustrating the
method in which nitrogen and other plant nutrients are extracted
from combustion gases in an irrigation system.
 FIG. 3 is a schematic view of the fertilizer system
for extraction of nitrogen compounds and other plant nutrients
as it is used in plant care equipment driven by an internal
 Referring to the accompanying drawings, there is
illustrated a fertilizer system generally indicated by reference
numeral 10. The system is particularly suited for as an extraction
system for nitrogen compounds and other plant nutrients from
combustion exhaust gases. The phrase "nitrogen compounds" is
understood in this specification to include any nitrogen related
compounds including nitrous oxide (N2O), nitrite (NO2), nitrate
(NO3), ammonium (NH4) and other aqueous or non-aqueous compounds
containing nitrogen which may be known to have benefits for
fertilizing plants. Other nutrients extracted are sulphur,
phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and carbon dioxide as a
 The system 10 includes a pump 14 for pumping water from a
source 16 of water used for distributing water to crops and
plants. The pump is driven by a motor 18 which typically comprises
an internal combustion engine consuming commonly available fossil
fuels, for example gasoline, natural gas, propane or diesel fuel
and the like.
 While various embodiments are described and illustrated
herein, the common features of each will first be described
herein. The pump 14 includes an inlet 20 and an outlet 22. The
inlet is coupled to a suction line 24 in communication with the
water source 16 while the outlet communicates with an outlet
pressure line 26 which directs the water to a distribution system
for an area to be irrigated or watered.
 The fertilizer system 10 includes an exhaust chamber 28
which is similar in construction to a conventional automotive
muffler in the illustrated embodiment. The exhaust chamber is a
sealed chamber having an inlet opening 30 at a top end and an
outlet opening 32 at a bottom end thereof. An inlet pipe 34
connects the inlet at the top of the exhaust chamber 28 in
communication with the exhaust of the motor 18 of the irrigation
system. The inlet pipe 34 includes a downwardly extending portion
36 which extends downwardly into the exhaust chamber 28 after an
elbow 38 redirecting the inlet pipe from the motor. The exhaust
chamber further includes internal baffles 40 which redirect the
exhaust passing therethrough from the inlet pipe 34 to an outlet
pipe 42 which is axially misaligned with the inlet pipe. As in a
conventional automotive muffler the exhaust must pass through
various baffles 40 and possibly through perforations in the
respective inlet and outlet pipes in order to navigate through the
 A catalytic converter 44 is coupled in series with the
inlet pipe between the motor 18 and the exhaust chamber 28 so that
exhaust gases pass through the catalytic converter prior to
entering the exhaust chamber. The catalytic converter acts as a
catalyst for the hot exhaust gases from the motor to react some of
the compounds within the exhaust gases. The catalytic converter
may be removed depending upon the desirable nitrogen compounds
which are to be extracted and depending upon the particular
application, the type of motor 18 and the type of fuel being
 A water injector 46 is provided for injecting water into
the hot exhaust gases as it enters the exhaust chamber 28. The
water injector is coupled to the downwardly extending portion 36
of the inlet pipe to prevent backflow of injected water to the
motor 18 of the pump. The water is sprayed into the exhaust
chamber for mixing with the hot exhaust gases to be converted to
steam before exiting through the outlet pipe. The water injector
46 receives water from the outlet pressure line 26 to which it is
coupled so as to receive pressurized water from the pump outlet to
be injected into the exhaust chamber by an injector line 64.
 The outlet pipe of the exhaust chamber 28 feeds into a
condensing chamber 48 where the mixture of water vapor or steam
and hot exhaust gases form condensate in the form of water
enriched with nitrogen compounds and other plant nutrients. The
condensing chamber 48 generally comprises a barrel or drum having
an inlet pipe 50 extending downwardly into the barrel at a top end
thereof to which the outlet pipe of the exhaust chamber is
coupled. The condensing chamber further includes an exhaust
opening 52 at the top end thereof. A condenser core 54 is provided
within the condensing chamber which spans the walls of the chamber
between the open end of the inlet pipe 50 and the exhaust opening
52. The condenser core includes passages therethrough for
circulating a cooling fluid to assist in the condensation process.
In the illustrated embodiment the cooling fluid comprises water
which is circulated from the outlet pressure line 26.
 A collector line 56 couples to a drain 58 at a bottom end
of the condensing chamber. The collector line 56 is coupled at an
opposite end to the suction line 24 adjacent the inlet of the pump
14 so that condensate collected from the condensing chamber by the
collector line 56 is drawn into the inlet of the pump with the
irrigation water from the source 16 to be subsequently distributed
by the outlet pressure line to a distribution system.
 A shut-off valve 60 is coupled in series with the collector
line 56 between the condensing chamber 48 and the suction line 24
to selectively interrupt flow of condensate through the collector
line. The shut-off valve 60 includes a suitable controller for
opening the valve 60 only when the pump motor 18 is operating so
that the shut-off valve 60 is closed when the motor is not in
operation to prevent leakage of condensate into the suction line.
 A float valve 62 is supported within the condensing chamber
48 and is coupled in series with the injector line 64 coupling the
water injector to the irrigation pressure line. The float valve is
arranged to be opened only when a level of condensate within the
condensing chamber falls below a prescribed level so that in the
instance when the level falls below the prescribed level, the
water injector 46 injects water to raise the condensate level.
Once sufficient condensate collects within the condenser above the
prescribed level, the float valve 62 closes to prevent further
water being injected into the exhaust chamber. The float valve 62
ensures that condensate level remains above the drain 58 and
corresponding collector line 56 to prevent air from being drawn
into the suction line of the pump.
 The fertilizer system 10 is first started by operating the
pump 14 using the pump motor 18. The motor draws in intake air
from the surrounding air which is approximately 78% nitrogen in
the form N2. The high heat of combustion in combination with the
compression and ignition within the engine converts the nitrogen
to useable forms of nitrogen compounds, for example nitrous oxides
(NOx). The hot exhaust gases exit the motor and pass into the
exhaust chamber 28 at which point the water injector 46 sprays
water into the hot stream of exhaust gases entering downwardly
into the exhaust chamber to form steam in the exhaust chamber
which absorbs and collects nitrogen compounds and other plant
nutrients from the hot exhaust gases forming various nitrogen
compounds in solution with the water vapor. The condensate which
then forms in the condensing chamber 48 includes such compounds as
NO2, NO3, NH4, sulphur, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper
and carbon dioxide as a carbonic acid. As noted above the water
level within the condensing chamber is controlled by the float
valve to inject water from the outlet pressure line as required to
maintain condensate level above the prescribed level. As long as
the motor of the pump remains in operation, the shut-off valve 60
remains open so that condensate from the condensing chamber is
sucked through the collector line 56 into the suction line 24 of
the pump to subsequently fertilize an area, upon which the
enriched water is dispersed, with nitrogen compounds and plant
nutrients carried by the water. By passing the exhaust through the
additional catalytic converter before entering the exhaust
chamber, the type or quantity of desirable nitrogen compounds can
be increased in the condensate which later forms as different
types of exhaust gases are converted as required depending upon
the type of combustion device and the type of fuel being
 The system 10 is particularly useful in combination with or
as a retrofit kit for conversion of an agricultural irrigation
system 12 or self propelled equipment 100 to enrich water to be
fed to the plant material in association therewith while reducing
harmful emissions of the engine/motor 18.
 When used in an irrigation system 12, as illustrated in
FIG. 1, the engine 18 comprises an existing engine of the
irrigation system used to drive the existing pump 14 of the
irrigation system for pumping water from a source in the form of
irrigation water collected for a crop or plants to be irrigated.
 When used on self propelled equipment 100, as illustrated
in FIG. 3, the engine 18 comprises an existing engine of the
equipment for propelling or driving the equipment, for example a
sprayer or mower engine, which is supported on wheels 101 for
rolling movement along the ground. The source 16 of water in this
instance comprises a portable tank carried by the equipment or
towed by the equipment on a trailer. The destination of the
enriched water is a sprayer type distribution system also carried
by the equipment 100.
 Turning now to FIG. 3 in greater detail, additional control
systems may be included for co-operation with the components noted
above with regard to common features of both embodiments. To
improve efficiency of the water scrubbing by injector 46, the
injector 46 may include a plurality of nozzles 102 at plural
spaced positions along the exhaust passage between the engine and
the exhaust chamber. The plurality of nozzles serve to inject
water at plural spaced positions more evenly and more gradually to
ensure more thorough mixing of the products of combustion with the
water vapour produced by the heat of the exhaust. Part of the
water provided to the injector 46 may also be directed to an
electrolysis device 104 which produced hydrogen and oxygen by
electrolysis for injection into the exhaust with the water to
further aid in the conversion process of nitrous oxides to useful
nitrite and nitrate compounds. A set of high voltage electrodes
106 can also be positioned within the exhaust passage extending
between the engine and the exhaust chamber to produce to a corona
or high voltage arc between the electrodes which provides energy
to assist in desirable chemical reactions taking place to promote
more favourable products of combustion. An electrical field
generator may also be provided which surrounds the exhaust
passage. Additional air to assist in the conversion of various
nitrous oxide compounds to desirable nitrite, nitrate and ammonia
is provided by an air pump 108 also driven by the engine 18.
 To provide more precise control of the fluid levels within
the condenser chamber, the condenser chamber may include an
auxiliary chamber 110 or may simply be enlarged to house further
controls therein. The auxiliary chamber 110 is coupled to the
condensate chamber so that levels of condensate are maintained at
the same level within each. The float valve 62 can thus be mounted
in either chamber in communication with the condensate for similar
operation of water passing through the injector line 64 to the
injector 46 when condensate levels fall below a prescribed level.
An additional float valve 112 is provided in the auxiliary chamber
110 in series with the collector line 56 where the collector line
couples to the drain 58 of the condensate chamber to permit
condensate to be dispensed into the collector line only when the
float valve 112 is opened as a result of condensate levels within
the condensate and auxiliary chambers being above a prescribed
level. This configuration ensures that in the event of a lack of
condensate for whatever reason, the collector line will not draw
air into the pump if the pump is permitted to continue operating
by the engine 18.
 The system 10 operates on the equipment 100 in a similar
manner of operation as the irrigation system by drawing water from
a tank carried on the equipment through the pump to a distribution
system of the equipment which may comprise sprayer nozzles and the
like for dispensing the water onto a field or planted area. The
pump is driven by an existing engine 18 of the equipment, for
example the engine driving the mower blades or propelling a mower
or sprayer for movement across the ground. Water is re-circulated
and mixed with the exhaust gases in the manner described above so
that desirable nutrients in the form of nitrite, nitrate and
ammonium, sulphur, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, copper and
carbon dioxide as a carbonic acid are dispensed to the planted
area while harmful emissions in the exhaust gases are reduced.
 In an irrigation system the source of water may comprise a
lagoon or the like which feeds water through the system as
described above for subsequently being dispersed to the irrigation
area. The engine 18 in this instance preferably comprises an
existing engine driving the irrigation pump of the irrigation
system. In either instance the fertilizer system is preferably
operated to run continuously while the engine is running with all
of the condensate being fully diverted into the water to be
dispersed over the planted area. Only water is preferably added,
with air being optionally added to the existing products of
combustion of the internal combustion engine 18 to provide a
system which is simple to operate which obtains benefits from
otherwise harmful and useless products of combustion.
 Further benefits of the use of water injected into an
exhaust chamber as described above include the pre-heating of
irrigation water and control of emission gases from the combustion
device. The addition of water to the exhaust gases is beneficial
to the environment because the interaction of water with the hot
exhaust gases causes some undesirable emissions to be converted to
less harmful compounds that are less damaging to the environment
and because the system requires no additional energy consumption
other than the use of equipment which would otherwise already be
 When the water injected into the exhaust chamber comprises
irrigation water which is returned to the irrigation pump, the
exhaust chamber acts as a heat exchanger to recover waste heat
from the exhaust gases to preheat the irrigation water. Preheating
the irrigation water is of benefit so that cold source water, for
example from a river, provides less thermal shock to irrigated
plants which would normally be warmer than the source water.
 While some embodiments of the present invention have been
described in the foregoing, it is to be understood that other
embodiments are possible within the scope of the invention. The
invention is to be considered limited solely by the scope of the
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