High-Rate Anaerobic Digestion of Waste Activated Sludge by Integration of Electro-Fenton Process.
ABSTRACT: Anaerobic digestion (AD), being the most effective treatment method of waste activated sludge (WAS), allows for safe disposal. The present study deals with the electro-Fenton (EF) pretreatment for enhancing the WAS biogas potential with low-cost iron electrodes. The effect of pretreatment on the physicochemical characteristics of sludge was assessed. Following EF pretreatment, the pH, conductivity, soluble chemical oxygen demand (SCOD), and volatile fatty acids (VFA) increased to 7.5, 13.72 mS/cm, 4.1 g/L, and 925 mg/L, respectively. Capillary suction time (CST) analysis highlighted the dewaterability effect of EF on WAS, as demonstrated by the decrease in CST from 429 to 180 s following 30 min of pretreatment. Batch digestion assays presented an increase in the biogas yield to 0.135 L/g volatile solids (VS) after 60 min of EF pretreatment in comparison to raw sludge (0.08 L/g VS). Production of biogas was also found to improve during semi-continuous fermentation of EF-pretreated sludge conducted in a lab-scale reactor. In comparison to raw sludge, EF-pretreated sludge produced the highest biogas yield (0.81 L biogas/g VS) with a high COD removal rate, reaching 96.6% at an organic loading rate (OLR) of 2.5 g VS/L. d. Results revealed that the EF process could be an effective WAS disintegration method with maximum recovery of bioenergy during AD.
Project description:Effects of different pretreatment methods on sludge dewaterability and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) degradation during petrochemical sludge anaerobic digestion were studied. Results showed that the total biogas production volume in the thermal pretreatment system was 4 and 5 times higher than that in the ultrasound pretreatment and in the control system, and the corresponding volatile solid removal efficiencies reached 28%, 15%, and 8%. Phenanthrene, paranaphthalene, fluoranthene, benzofluoranthene, and benzopyrene removal rates reached 43.3%, 55.5%, 30.6%, 42.9%, and 41.7%, respectively, in the thermal pretreatment system, which were much higher than those in the ultrasound pretreatment and in the control system. Moreover, capillary suction time (CST) of sludge increased after pretreatment, and then reduced after 20 days of anaerobic digestion, indicating that sludge dewaterability was greatly improved after anaerobic digestion. The decrease of protein and polysaccharide in the sludge could improve sludge dewaterability during petrochemical sludge anaerobic digestion. This study suggested that thermal pretreatment might be a promising enhancement method for petrochemical sludge solubilization, thus contributing to degradation of the PAHs, biogas production, and improvement of dewaterability during petrochemical sludge anaerobic digestion.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Understanding the effects of pretreatment on anaerobic digestion of sludge waste from wastewater treatment plants is becoming increasingly important, as impetus moves towards the utilization of sludge for renewable energy production. Although the field of sludge pretreatment has progressed significantly over the past decade, critical questions concerning the underlying microbial interactions remain unanswered. In this study, a metagenomic approach was adopted to investigate the microbial composition and gene content contributing to enhanced biogas production from sludge subjected to a novel pretreatment method (maintaining pH at 10 for 8 days) compared to other documented methods (ultrasonic, thermal and thermal-alkaline). RESULTS:Our results showed that pretreated sludge attained a maximum methane yield approximately 4-fold higher than that of the blank un-pretreated sludge set-up at day 17. Both the microbial and metabolic consortium shifted extensively towards enhanced biodegradation subsequent to pretreatment, providing insight for the enhanced methane yield. The prevalence of Methanosaeta thermophila and Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus, together with the functional affiliation of enzymes-encoding genes suggested an acetoclastic and hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis pathway. Additionally, an alternative enzymology in Methanosaeta was observed. CONCLUSIONS:This study is the first to provide a microbiological understanding of improved biogas production subsequent to a novel waste sludge pretreatment method. The knowledge garnered will assist the design of more efficient pretreatment methods for biogas production in the future.
Project description:High-solid anaerobic digestion is an attractive solution to the problem of sewage sludge disposal. One method that can be used to enhance the production of volatile fatty acids (VFAs) and the generation of methane from anaerobic digestion involves combining an alkaline pretreatment step with the synergistic effects of sewage sludge and cattle manure co-digestion, which improves the activity of key enzymes and microorganisms in the anaerobic co-digestion system to promote the digestion of organic waste. In this study, we describe an efficient strategy that involves adjusting the volatile solid (VS) ratio (sewage sludge/cattle manure: 3/7) and initial pH (9.0) to improve VFA production and methane generation from the co-digestion of sludge and manure. The experimental results indicate that the maximum VFA production was 98.33?g/kg-TS (total solid) at the optimal conditions. Furthermore, methane generation in a long-term semi-continuously operated reactor (at a VS ratio of 3/7 and pH of 9.0) was greater than 120.0?L/kg-TS.
Project description:The study presents a comparison of the influence of a clinoptilolite-rich rock-zeolite (commonly used for improving anaerobic digestion processes)-and a highly porous clay mineral, halloysite (mainly used for gas purification), on the biogas production process. Batch experiments showed that the addition of each mineral increased the efficiency of mesophilic anaerobic digestion of both sewage sludge and maize silage. However, halloysite generated 15% higher biogas production during maize silage transformation. Halloysite also contributed to a much higher reduction of chemical oxygen demand for both substrates (by ~8% for maize silage and ~14% for sewage sludge) and a higher reduction of volatile solids and total ammonia for maize silage (by ~8% and ~4%, respectively). Metagenomic analysis of the microbial community structure showed that the addition of both mineral sorbents influenced the presence of key members of archaea and bacteria occurring in a well-operated biogas reactor. The significant difference between zeolite and halloysite is that the latter promoted the immobilization of key methanogenic archaea Methanolinea (belong to Methanomicrobia class). Based on this result, we postulate that halloysite could be useful not only as a sorbent for (bio)gas treatment methodologies but also as an agent for improving biogas production.
Project description:Microalgae biomethanization is driven by anaerobic sludge associated microorganisms and is generally limited by the incomplete hydrolysis of the microalgae cell wall, which results in a low availability of microalgal biomass for the methanogenic community. The application of enzymatic pretreatments, e.g., with hydrolytic enzymes, is among the strategies used to work around the incomplete hydrolysis of the microalgae cell wall. Despite the proven efficacy of these pretreatments in increasing biomethanization, the changes that a given pretreatment may cause to the anaerobic sludge associated microorganisms during biomethanization are still unknown. This study evaluated the changes in the expression of the metatranscriptome of anaerobic sludge associated microorganisms during Chlorella sorokiniana biomethanization without pretreatment (WP) (control) and pretreated with commercial cellulase in order to increase the solubilization of the microalgal organic matter. Pretreated microalgal biomass experienced significant increases in biogas the production. The metatranscriptomic analysis of control samples showed functionally active microalgae cells, a bacterial community dominated by ?- and ?-proteobacteria, and a methanogenic community dominated by Methanospirillum hungatei. In contrast, pretreated samples were characterized by the absence of active microalgae cells and a bacteria population dominated by species of the Clostridia class. These differences are also related to the differential activation of metabolic pathways e.g., those associated with the degradation of organic matter during its biomethanization.
Project description:Food waste contains numerous easily degradable components, and anaerobic digestion is prone to acidification and instability. This work aimed to investigate the effect of adding yeast on biogas production performance, when substrate is added after biogas production is reduced. The results showed that the daily biogas production increased 520 and 550 ml by adding 2.0% (volatile solids; VS) of activated yeast on the 12th and 37th day of anaerobic digestion, respectively, and the gas production was relatively stable. In the control group without yeast, the increase of gas production was significantly reduced. After the second addition of substrate and yeast, biogas production only increased 60 ml compared with that before the addition. After fermentation, the biogas production of yeast group also increased by 33.2% compared with the control group. Results of the analysis of indicators, such as volatile organic acids, alkalinity and propionic acid, showed that the stability of the anaerobic digestion system of the yeast group was higher. Thus, the yeast group is highly likely to recover normal gas production when the biogas production is reduced, and substrate is added. The results provide a reference for experiments on the industrialization of continuous anaerobic digestion to take tolerable measures when the organic load of the feed fluctuates dramatically.
Project description:This study utilized <i>Penicillium</i> spp. to treat mature landfill leachate (MLL) in a continuous bioreactor and batch experimental tests under non-sterile conditions. MLL characteristics such as chemical oxygen demand (COD), soluble COD (sCOD), total carbon (TC), total organic carbon (TOC), and color removal efficiency were determined. The lignocellulosic enzymatic activity of laccase (Lac), lignin-peroxidase (LiP), and manganese-peroxidase (MnP) was also determined. The batch experimental test was carried out with raw and pretreated MLL containing the initial NH<sub>4</sub> <sup>+</sup>-N concentrations of 0, 105, 352, and 914 mg/L. A maximum COD reduction of 41% and maximum enzymatic activity of 193, 37, and 25 U/L for Lac, LiP and MnP was recorded for the MLL containing 352 mg/L NH<sub>4</sub> <sup>+</sup>-N. The continuous bioreactor exhibited maximum values of 52, 54, 60, 58, and 75 percentage of COD, sCOD, TC, TOC, and color removal efficiency with MLL containing 352 mg/L NH<sub>4</sub> <sup>+</sup>-N that was pretreated at HRT 120 h, while the maximum detected lignocellulosic enzymatic activities were 149, 27, and 16 U/L for Lac, LiP, and MnP, respectively. A total of 64% COD reduction was achieved from the raw MLL considering 12% COD and 100% NH<sub>4</sub> <sup>+</sup>-N reduction in the aerobic activated sludge sequencing batch reactor pretreatment process. The steady and higher removal efficiency of the bioreactor over the entire study period is promising for further exploration to enhance removal of refractory contaminants from the MLL.
Project description:The current study analyzed and optimized the concentration of NaOH for alkaline pretreatment of kitchen refuse for biogas production. Also, the benefits of microwave assistance in enhanced biogasification of kitchen refuse were evaluated. The TS, VS and structural changes were compared using standard experimental techniques. Molecular dynamics was investigated for the molecular level changes leading to higher biogasification in NaOHmicrowave combined pretreatment. The methane and biogas yields were calculated to validate the benefits of microwave assistance in efficient biogasification. The NaOH-microwave combined pretreatment showed higher VS production. Microwave treatment degraded and removed lignin more efficiently. Molecular dynamics studies revealed the induction of configurational instability in lignin and cellulose molecules with variable temperatures. The methane and biogas production increased with 6% NaOH concentration, and decreased at higher NaOH concentration till 10%. Microwave assistance declined the required NaOH concentration further to 4%. Thus, as compared to 6% NaOH concentration required for an efficient pretreatment, the kitchen refuse was efficiently pretreated with 4% NaOH concentration when combined with a 30 min duration microwaving. The experimental and computational data provided a detailed analysis proposing an optimized, novel and promising method to pretreat kitchen refuse for efficient and enhanced biogas production.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Part-stream low-frequency ultrasound (LFUS) was one of the common practices for sludge disintegration in full-scale anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities. However, the effectiveness of part-stream LFUS treatment and its effect on AD microbiome have not been fully elucidated.<h4>Methods</h4>Here we testified the effectiveness of part-stream LFUS pretreatment by treating only a fraction of feed sludge (23% and 33% total solid of the feed sludge) with 20 Hz LFUS for 70 s. State-of-the-art metagenomic and metatranscriptomic analysis was used to investigate the microbial process underpinning the enhanced AD performance by part-stream LFUS pretreatment.<h4>Results</h4>By pretreating 33% total solid of the feed sludge, methane yield was increased by 36.5%, while the volatile solid reduction ratio remained unchanged. RNA-seq of the microbiome at stable stage showed that the continuous dosage of easy-degradable LFUS-pretreated feed sludge had gradually altered the microbial community by selecting <i>Bacteroidales</i> hydrolyzer with greater metabolic capability to hydrolyze cellulosic biomass without substrate attachment. Meanwhile, <i>Thermotogales</i> with excellent cell mobility for nutrient capturing was highly active within the community. Foremost proportion of the methanogenesis was contributed by the dominant <i>Methanomicrobiales</i> via carbon dioxide reduction. More interestingly, a perceivable proportion of the reverse electron flow of the community was input from <i>Methanoculleus</i> species other than syntrophic acetate-oxidizing bacteria. In addition, metagenomic binning retrieved several interesting novel metagenomic-assembled genomes (MAGs): MAG-bin6 of <i>Alistipes shahii</i> showed exceptional transcriptional activities towards protein degradation and MAG-bin11 of Candidatus <i>Cloacimonetes</i> with active cellulolytic GH74 gene detected.<h4>Conclusions</h4>In summary, despite the unchanged sludge digestibility, the applied part-stream LFUS pretreatment strategy was robust in adjusting the microbial pathways towards more effective substrate conversion enabled by free-living hydrolyser and beta-oxidation-capable methanogens.
Project description:Anaerobic digestion (AD) plays an important role in waste activated sludge (WAS) treatment; however, conventional AD (CAD) process needs substantial improvements, especially for the treatment of WAS with low solids content and poor anaerobic biodegradability. Herein, we propose a submerged anaerobic dynamic membrane bioreactor (AnDMBR) for simultaneous WAS thickening and digestion without any pretreatment. During the long-term operation, the AnDMBR exhibited an enhanced sludge reduction and improved methane production over CAD process. Moreover, the biogas generated in the AnDMBR contained higher methane content than CAD process. Stable carbon isotopic signatures elucidated the occurrence of combined methanogenic pathways in the AnDMBR process, in which hydrogenotrophic methanogenic pathway made a larger contribution to the total methane production. It was also found that organic matter degradation was enhanced in the AnDMBR, thus providing more favorable substrates for microorganisms. Pyrosequencing revealed that Proteobacteria and Bacteroidetes were abundant in bacterial communities and Methanosarcina and Methanosaeta in archaeal communities, which played an important role in the AnDMBR system. This study shed light on the enhanced digestion of WAS using AnDMBR technology.