is provided by drum rotation and by the ventilation
Moisture is obtained directly from human waste.
Organic material in the form of peat moss
is added manually, since this organic carbon is absorbent,
holds oxygen, and is cheap and readily available.
Heat is generated by the compost itself, assisted by the
heating element (on electric models).
Microbes are contained in the rich top soil which is added
to the compost.
engineered air flow within Sun-Mar units ensures that a partial
vacuum is maintained within the unit at all times. Because
air is continuously drawn into the toilet, there is no backdraft,
and hence no smell.
In addition, the tumbling action of
the composting drum results in such a moist and beautifully oxygenated
compost that an aerobic breakdown takes place which is both fast
and odorless. Breakdown is odorless because aerobic microbes produce
only carbon dioxide and water vapor, quite unlike the unpleasant
anaerobic smell often found in a septic tank, outhouse, or backyard
MICROBES AND THE
Sun-Mar's unique Bio-drum has been
developed to provide the optimum conditions for aerobic composting.
Using a Bio-drum, Sun-Mar has been able to ensure that the compost
in the drum is maintained in the moist, warm, well mixed, oxygen
rich condition which aerobic bacteria need for optimum performance.
Sun-Mar has also found that the use
of a Bio-drum avoids the anaerobic activity which occurs wherever
there is insufficient oxygen. This is important because anaerobic
activity is slow and produces offensive odors.
The use of this revolutionary Bio-drum
results in composting speeds double those of the old single chamber
units with mechanical mixers.
START UP AND USE
Sun-Mar units require very little
maintenance. Peat moss should be added at the rate
of one cupful per person per day. Toilet paper is decomposed easily
by Sun-mar units and should be added as usual. The compost should
be mixed and aerated every third day (or at the end of the weekend)
while the toilet is in use, simply by turning the drum handle and
rotating the drum 4-6 complete revolutions. In cottage use, some
composted material may only need to be extracted in the spring.
In residential or commercial use extraction will be more frequent.
Sun-Mar makes its units out of fibreglass
and marine grade stainless steel, so freezing temperatures will
do no damage even if the compost freezes in the drum. Composting
action decreases with temperature, so for extended winter use, the
unit should be kept at a minimum temperature of about 55-60 degrees
F (13-15 degrees C) and all piping should be well insulated. For
periodic use in winter, the toilet may be used as a holding tank,
until the compost warms up, and the microbes emerge from dormancy.
Electric units should be plugged in on arrival so the ventilation
system is working and there will be no odor. When the compost is
frozen, the drum should not be rotated.