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Use of laboratory anaerobic digesters to simulate the increase of treatment rate in full-scale high nitrogen content sewage sludge and co-digestion biogas plants

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-54
Number of pages8
JournalBioresource Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


The aim of this study was to assess the effect of increasing feedstock treatment rate on the performance of full-scale anaerobic digestion using laboratory-scale reactors with digestate and feedstock from full-scale digesters. The studied nitrogen-containing feedstocks were i) a mixture of industrial by-products and pig slurry, and ii) municipal sewage sludge, which digestion was studied at 41 and 52 degrees C, respectively. This study showed the successful reduction of hydraulic retention times from 25 and 20 days to around 15 days, which increased organic loading rates from 2 to 3.5 kg volatile solids (VS)/m(3) d and 4 to 6 kg VS/m(3) d. As a result, the optimum retention time in terms of methane production and VS removal was 10-15% lower than the initial in the full-scale digesters. Accumulation of acids during start-up of the co-digestion reactor was suggested to be connected to the high ammonium nitrogen concentration and intermediate temperature of 41 degrees C. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Anaerobic digestion, Nitrogen, Co-digestion, Sewage sludge, Hydraulic retention time, MICROBIAL COMMUNITY STRUCTURE, FOOD WASTE, SUBSTRATE RATIO, AMMONIA, INOCULUM, TEMPERATURE, PERFORMANCE, MANURE

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland