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Asian Journal of Scientific Research
Year: 2008  |  Volume: 1  |  Issue: 5  |  Page No.: 510 - 517

Efficiency of Anaerobic Digestion of Low-Strength Sludge under Different Thermophilic Conditions

Saleh Faraj Magram and Mahmoud Mohamed Abdel Azeem    

Abstract: This study reports the efficiency of the anaerobic process for digestion of low-strength domestic sewage sludge under different thermophilic conditions. The efficiency was assessed in terms of methanogenic activity along the experimental period as well as the maximum reduction of organics pollutants in the investigated sludge samples. The experimental work was conducted in a batch system under different temperatures (40, 45, 50 °C) to ascertain the optimum condition for the degradation process. The results show a removal efficiency of 81% of COD, 96% of BOD and 74% of TS within about 52 days of inoculation under 40 °C. Only a slight increase in removal performance was observed with the increase of operating temperature. The period required for complete digestion was also observed to be temperature independent. The M-Factor (COD removed into methane/COD removed) ranged around 0.25 irrespective of the operational temperature. Irrespective of the operating temperature, the maximum methanogenic activity was delayed until 52 days. In accordance with the observed results, it is suggested that the anaerobic digestion process should be designed according to the maximum methanogenic activity (gCOD-CH4/gVSS/day) and the corresponding required digestion time (days), which, in turn, depend on the composition and characteristics of sludge.

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