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J Biosci Bioeng. 2007 Feb;103(2):105-12.

Recent development of anaerobic digestion processes for energy recovery from wastes.

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Department of Molecular Biotechnology, Graduate School of Advanced Sciences of Matter, Hiroshima University, 1-3-1 Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima 739-8530, Japan.


Anaerobic digestion leads to the overall gasification of organic wastewaters and wastes, and produces methane and carbon dioxide; this gasification contributes to reducing organic matter and recovering energy from organic carbons. Here, we propose three new processes and demonstrate the effectiveness of each process. By using complete anaerobic organic matter removal process (CARP), in which diluted wastewaters such as sewage and effluent from a methane fermentation digester were treated under anaerobic condition for post-treatment, the chemical oxygen demand (COD) in wastewater was decreased to less than 20 ppm. The dry ammonia-methane two-stage fermentation process (Am-Met process) is useful for the anaerobic treatment of nitrogen-rich wastes such as waste excess sludge, cow feces, chicken feces, and food waste without the dilution of the ammonia produced by water or carbon-rich wastes. The hydrogen-methane two-stage fermentation (Hy-Met process), in which the hydrogen produced in the first stage is used for a fuel cell system to generate electricity and the methane produced in the second stage is used to generate heat energy to heat the two reactors and satisfy heat requirements, is useful for the treatment of sugar-rich wastewaters, bread wastes, and biodiesel wastewaters.

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