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Sensors 2016, 16(11), 1919; doi:10.3390/s16111919

Wastewater Biosolid Composting Optimization Based on UV-VNIR Spectroscopy Monitoring

Department of Agrochemistry and Environment, University Miguel Hernández of Elche (UMH), Avenida Universidad s/n Edificio Alcudia, 03202 Elche, Spain
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Academic Editor: W. Rudolf Seitz
Received: 13 August 2016 / Revised: 28 October 2016 / Accepted: 11 November 2016 / Published: 15 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
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Abstract

Conventional wastewater treatment generates large amounts of organic matter–rich sludge that requires adequate treatment to avoid public health and environmental problems. The mixture of wastewater sludge and some bulking agents produces a biosolid to be composted at adequate composting facilities. The composting process is chemically and microbiologically complex and requires an adequate aeration of the biosolid (e.g., with a turner machine) for proper maturation of the compost. Adequate (near) real-time monitoring of the compost maturity process is highly difficult and the operation of composting facilities is not as automatized as other industrial processes. Spectroscopic analysis of compost samples has been successfully employed for compost maturity assessment but the preparation of the solid compost samples is difficult and time-consuming. This manuscript presents a methodology based on a combination of a less time-consuming compost sample preparation and ultraviolet, visible and short-wave near-infrared spectroscopy. Spectroscopic measurements were performed with liquid compost extract instead of solid compost samples. Partial least square (PLS) models were developed to quantify chemical fractions commonly employed for compost maturity assessment. Effective regression models were obtained for total organic matter (residual predictive deviation—RPD = 2.68), humification ratio (RPD = 2.23), total exchangeable carbon (RPD = 2.07) and total organic carbon (RPD = 1.66) with a modular and cost-effective visible and near infrared (VNIR) spectroradiometer. This combination of a less time-consuming compost sample preparation with a versatile sensor system provides an easy-to-implement, efficient and cost-effective protocol for compost maturity assessment and near-real-time monitoring. View Full-Text
Keywords: wastewater sludge; biosolid compost; spectroscopy; PLS wastewater sludge; biosolid compost; spectroscopy; PLS
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MDPI and ACS Style

Temporal-Lara, B.; Melendez-Pastor, I.; Gómez, I.; Navarro-Pedreño, J. Wastewater Biosolid Composting Optimization Based on UV-VNIR Spectroscopy Monitoring. Sensors 2016, 16, 1919.

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