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Bioresour Technol. 2013 Apr;133:206-12. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2013.01.101. Epub 2013 Jan 29.

Pilot scale anaerobic co-digestion of municipal wastewater sludge with biodiesel waste glycerin.

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Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.


The effect on process performance of adding increasing proportions of biodiesel waste glycerin (BWG) to municipal wastewater sludge (MWS) was studied using two 1300 L pilot-scale digesters under mesophilic conditions at 20 days SRT. The highest proportion of BWG that did not cause a process upset was determined to be 23% and 35% of the total 1.04 kg VS/(m(3)d) and 2.38 kg COD/(m(3)d) loadings, respectively. At this loading, the biogas and methane production rates in the test digester were 1.65 and 1.83 times greater than of those in the control digester which received only MWS, respectively. The COD and VS removal rates at this loading in the test digester were 1.82 and 1.63-fold those of the control digester, respectively. Process instability was observed when the proportion of BWG in the test digester feed was 31% and 46% of the 1.18 kg VS/(m(3)d) and 2.88 kg COD/(m(3)d) loadings, respectively.

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