Faculty Advisor

Rosbach, Derren

Faculty Advisor

Traver, Robert W.


The San Francisco School is a self-sufficient agricultural school in Paraguay. We sought to reduce the cost of heating a farrowing enclosure via renewable biogas. A universal design approach and interviews with on-site experts and practitioners let us assess the system for biogas output and source necessary components. Our design and cost analysis recommended a combined gas and electric heating system. Predicted heating costs dropped by at least 15% per month. Difficult aspects of the project were changed project focus, different perspectives of the project among San Francisco school staff, cross-cultural communication and the team’s remote location. From the standpoint of learning how to negotiate technology and society, the project proved a great success; but the process is challenging.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2013

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Advisor Department

Interdisciplinary Programs