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Integrated food waste and sewage treatment – A better approach than conventional food waste-sludge co-digestion for higher energy recovery via anaerobic digestion

Kaur, Guneet, Luo, Liwen, Chen, Guanghao, Wong, Jonathan W.C.
Bioresource technology 2019 v.289 pp. 121698
anaerobic digestion, energy recovery, food waste, methane production, mixing, sewage, sewage treatment, sludge, solubilization, waste disposal
This work proposes a new treatment approach involving both food waste disposal and sewerage treatment called MOWFAST i.e. Municipal Organic Waste management by combined Food waste disposal and Sewerage Treatment. MOWFAST involves mixing of food waste directly with raw sewage instead of separate addition to sludge and their combined anaerobic digestion (AD). Compared to conventional sludge digestion, MOWFAST exhibited better digestion capability and allowed a greater degradation of organic material along with higher production of methanogenic-favourable products from the beginning of digestion. This resulted in producing higher specific methane yields (7.86 LCH4/kg VSadded versus 0.95 LCH4/kg VSadded) and 1.4-fold higher cumulative methane yield over sludge AD. Furthermore, compared with conventional food waste-sludge co-digestion, MOWFAST gave higher solubilization of organic material (0.82 g sCOD/g VSadded versus 0.23 g sCOD/g VSadded) and specific methane yields (7.86 LCH4/kg VSadded versus 3.2 LCH4/kg VSadded). This proves its feasibility for digestion and methane generation potential.