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Type: Journal article
Title: Effect of total solids content on anaerobic digestion of poultry litter with biochar
Author: Indren, M.
Birzer, C.
Kidd, S.
Medwell, P.
Citation: Journal of Environmental Management, 2020; 255:109744-1-109744-9
Publisher: Elsevier
Issue Date: 2020
ISSN: 0301-4797
Statement of
Mathu Indren, Cristian H.Birzer, Stephen P.Kidd, Paul R.Medwell
Abstract: Methane production via anaerobic digestion of poultry litter provides a pathway for energy production from an abundant waste product. Recent studies have shown the use of biochar (pyrolysed biomass) can decrease methane production lag times and increase peak daily yields from ammonia-stressed low-solids anaerobic digesters. Due to the variety of feedstocks and digester configurations used, research to date has not yet determined the effect of biochar addition as a function of the digester total solids content. This study shows the addition of biochar reduces the lag time by a greater percentage in the digesters with a higher total solids content. There was a 17%, 27% and 41% reduction lag time due to biochar addition at total solids contents of 5%, 10% and 20%, respectively. The peak daily methane yield increased by 136% at 10% total solids. There was no significant increase in the peak yield at 5% total solids, while there was a 46% increase at 20% total solids. Real-time PCR analysis confirms the Methanosaetaceae family, which is a key methanogen due to its ability to facilitate direct interspecies electron transfer while attached to biochar, preferentially attaches to biochar. Furthermore, this research shows the attachment of the Methanosaetaceae family, does not decrease with increasing total solids content. A potential negative effect of biochar addition, a reduced volumetric efficiency, can be negated by using a shorter retention time. This new understanding will help to improve predictions of the impact of biochar addition for new digester designs operating in semi-solids and high-solids conditions.
Keywords: Anaerobic digestion; Biochar; Poultry litter; Total solids content; Biogas
Rights: © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
RMID: 1000005538
DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.109744
Appears in Collections:Mechanical Engineering publications

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