Biogas Production : Anaerobic Digestion of Grains Diluted in Process Water from a Wastewater Treatment Plant
Sammanfattning: In light of constant research regarding the development of alternate fuels, anaerobic digestion of grains diluted in process water from a wastewater treatment plant has been investigaed by starting biogas reactors to produce methane. The possibility of using the sludge from the reactors as fertilizer was also explored. The experiment ran for 90 days of which three days were used to collect samples over a 24-hour period. Variables monitored were associated to process stability, consistency and production. The results of the 24-hour periods show that volatile fatty acids concentrations increase immediately following feeding, peak a few hours later then decrease. Gas production is most efficient at the beginning of the period then stagers after about 20 hours. Results of the 90-day period resemble the 24-hour results; high volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentrations are often linked to low gas production and methane concentrations. The results indicate that certain types of process waters are better suited as dilution liquids than others i.e. digested sludge is better than centrifugation water, though overall gas production in all reactors averaged ca 650 ml/ g volatile solids loaded. With regards to fertilizer use, Cr was the only metal that was measured in unacceptable quantities. Fertilizing the land is not a problem seen from the heavy metals perspective. There is, however, a need for further research and process development before any full-scale digestion processes of this type are initiated.
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