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Anaerobic digestion of biological sludge from the pulp and paper industry
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Department of Water and Environmental Studies.
2009 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The need for - and use of non-fossile fuels such as biogas have increased due to global warming, oil depletion and stricter environmental regulations. Organic wastes can be anaerobically digested in order to produce biogas, which can be utilized to generate heat or electricity. So far, little attention has been directed towards anaerobic digestion of organic wastes from the forest industry. Due to high sludge management costs and more rigorous environmental legislation, the demand for new and/or improved disposal methodologies has increased. Substrate treatment methods such as enzyme addition and ultrasound are of interest in order to make anaerobic digestion of organic wastes, e.g. biological sludge, economically feasible.

The aim of this study is to evaluate if biological sludge from the pulp and paper industry can be used for methane production in anaerobic digestion and to investigate the effects of ultrasound pre-treatment and enzyme treatment.

The aim of the study was accomplished by performing four batch experiments, during 67-110 days, and a six months laboratory-scale semi-continuous digestion experiment. Substrates were provided by a chemical and a mechanical paper mill, whereas Kemzymes® from Kemira and ultrasound equipment from Ultra Sonus were used for sludge treatment.

The short term average accumulation of methane per added g VS rate increased both when ultrasound pre-treatment and enzyme treatment was applied in batch experiments. The enzyme treatment was considered to have a greater potential in larger scale and was consequently used in the semi-continuous digestion experiment. Positive effects of the treatment were however difficult to prove. Adapting the enzyme treatment to be more specific for the degradation of the sludge is recommended.

It is possible that there are inhibitory interactions between ultrasound pre-treatment and enzyme treatment. 75% ultrasound pre-treatment is an alternative to complete pre-treatment and renders equivalent average accumulation of methane per added g VS. Storage of ultrasound pre-treated biological sludge at 4°C for six and 13 days does not affect the average accumulation of methane per added g VS. Enzyme treatment of biological sludge enhanced the average accumulation of methane per added g VS from indigenous material in the inoculum.

It is likely that anaerobic digestion of biological sludge from the pulp and paper industry can render a stable biogas production. High viscosity and agitation problems were predominant in the semi-continuous digestion experiment and can be difficult to control in larger scale.

The results from the semi-continuous digestion experiment are similar with those obtained from the batch experiments. The methane production rates in this study are lower (biological sludge from chemical pulp process) or higher (mechanical ditto) in comparison to those presented data by Puhakka et al. (1992). Different types of biological sludge were used and might explain the prevailing differences.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. , 70 p.
Keyword [en]
Anaerobic digestion biogas biological sludge paper and pulp industry
National Category
Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-60527ISRN: LIU-TEMAV/TBM-EX--10/006--SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-60527DiVA: diva2:357263
Presentation
2009-09-18, Linköping, 10:00 (Swedish)
Uppsok
Technology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2010-11-11 Created: 2010-10-15 Last updated: 2010-11-11Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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