Newsletter Paragon
Aerated Compost Systems

Pilot Projects

A quick and inexpensive way to answer key questions before committing to a full-scale compost system.

O2Compost specializes in assisting private and public sector clients with conducting pilot projects to demonstrate the effectiveness of the ASP method and to evaluate if this approach to composting is appropriate for their situation. Composting is experiential. A pilot project is an exceptionally useful exercise that allows out clients to:

Pilot Project
  • Quickly and inexpensively test the feasibility of 1) collecting and composting source-separated organics; and 2) utilizing the finished compost on site or selling it to gardeners in their local community.

  • Provide hands-on training in the science and art of composting for management and operating staff, and establish a set of standard operating procedures.

  • Produce a finished compost product that can be evaluated in a laboratory and used for growth trials as well as test marketing.

  • Identify logistical constraints and evaluate possible solutions to improve overall efficiency of current waste management practices.

  • Compare proprietary compost systems and alternative methods side by side.

  • Complete the pilot phase within a relatively short period of time (2 to 12 months) to avoid over committing financial and staff resources.

  • Evaluate the possible need for operating permits and an environmental review process.

  • Establish confidence with stakeholders (decision makers, regulators, and neighbors).

  • Conduct a cost-benefit analysis to evaluate the return on investment and determine if on-site composting is an economically sustainable practice.

  • Establish a set of metrics to evaluate the institution's reduction in carbon footprint.

  • Reach a Go/No-Go decision quickly and at a minimal cost.

  • Establish a basis for full-scale system design and a budget for construction and annual operation.

An expanded pilot project may also include a comprehensive waste audit of currently non-recycled materials to determine what additional percentage of the waste stream can be captured and diverted to recycling and reuse.

Composting 101


If oxygen is the secret to composting, WATER is the magic ingredient. Aerobic microorganisms live in a thin film of water around each of the particles and this thin film serves as their “highway”, allowing populations of bacteria and fungi to grow in number and diversity and spread rapidly throughout the pile. Water also serves to reduce pile odors and helps keep pile temperatures at manageable levels.

If the compost pile is too wet (i.e., much over 65% moisture content), the pore spaces will be filled with water resulting in anaerobic conditions and the generation of offensive odors.

If the compost pile is too dry (i.e., below 50% moisture content), the microbiology of the system will crash and no composting will take place.

With the O2Compost Training Program, we offer our technical support for all of our new clients and we find that 90% of all troubleshooting relates to the moisture content of the compost mix. 

The bad news is that a “dry pile” eventually happens to everyone. The good news is that it is easy to fix simply by adding water. The bad news is that the pile will need to be broken down to rewet it. You cannot evenly rewet the mix by spraying the top of the pile. The good news is that if you ultimately have to “waste” a pile, you are much closer to getting it right the next time.

Wishful Thinking1  


Not-so-frequently-asked QUESTION: Can we compost horse, dog, chicken, and household raw veggie waste all in one system?

ANSWER: Yes. All of these feedstocks can be blended together in one of our aerated static pile (ASP) bin systems. With the exception of dog and cat waste, you can use the finished compost however you like (e.g. your vegetable garden). If your compost includes dog and cat waste, the conventional wisdom in the compost industry is to not use the finished product in association with food crops for humans. It is also important that you not give it away because you then lose control over how it is used. You can use the (dog/cat) compost in any other application - as a landscaping soil amendment, on your pastures, etc.

Client Testimonial

Anonymous O2Composter
Composting Since: 2012

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"I am so pleased I got my composting system underway. A colleague was complaining that manure removal costs have increased nearly 150% and I noticed fertilizer costs are also going through the roof, if it's available at all. So thank you very much! My system is working quite well and I'm very happy with it."


New Benchmark System

Rasmussen FB

Owner:  Dana R.
Location:  Ocala, FL