NASA has become the first US federal agency to power a facility with gas from trash.



NASA is using methane from a landfill to heat buildings at its Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.



The gas comes from the nearby Sandy Hill Landfill, which has collected about 5.2 million tons of trash and will likely generate landfill gas for at least 30 years.



Methane is drawn out of the landfill by 80 wells attached to a vacuum system. The methane is sent to a purification plant and then through a five-mile pipeline to Goddard, where NASA uses it to fire boilers that produce steam to heat 31 buildings.

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