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Novel insight into high solid anaerobic digestion of swine manure after thermal treatment: Kinetics and microbial community properties

Hu, Yu-ying, Wu, Jing, Li, Huai-zhi, Poncin, Souhila, Wang, Kai-jun, Zuo, Jian-e
Journal of environmental management 2019 v.235 pp. 169-177
anaerobic digestion, biodegradability, energy, heat treatment, hydrolysis, methane production, methanogens, microbial communities, pig manure
Compared to traditional anaerobic digestion (AD), high solid anaerobic digestion (HSAD) had the advantages of small digester, low heating energy and less digestate. However, the methane production was poor. In our previous study, thermal treatment (70 ± 1 °C, 3 days) without any dilution could satisfactorily enhance the methane production rate of HSAD by up to 39.5%. However, effects of solid content on HSAD after thermal treatment were not yet studied. In this study, HSAD was conducted at 11.7–17.6% solid content, and the control experiment was conducted at low solid content (4.4% solid content). Results showed that HSAD's methane production rate was the highest at 11.7% solid content (158 mL CH4/g VS), and could reach up to 89.2% of that at 4.4% solid content. The utilization of organics was revealed by kinetics analysis that the readily biodegradable organics could be utilized at increasing solid content with decreasing hydrolysis rate. Furthermore, it was notable that methylotrophic methanogens predominated in HSAD with the abundance of 82.6%. This was quite unique from the general belief that AD system was usually dominated by acetoclastic or hydrogenotrophic methanogenic pathways. In this study, the microbial community structure of HSAD after thermal treatment was firstly studied, its unique specific methanogenic pathways was firstly revealed.