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Article

Hydrothermal Carbonization as a Strategy for Sewage Sludge Management: Influence of Process Withdrawal Point on Hydrochar Properties

1
Department of Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering, University of Trento, via Mesiano 77, 38123 Trento, Italy
2
Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University, 226 Riley-Robb Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
3
Faculty of Science and Technology, Free University of Bolzano, Piazza Università 5, 39100 Bolzano, Italy
4
Faculty of Engineering and Architecture, University of Enna Kore, Cittadella Universitaria, 94100 Enna, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2020, 13(11), 2890; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13112890
Received: 29 April 2020 / Revised: 23 May 2020 / Accepted: 1 June 2020 / Published: 5 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrothermal Carbonization)
Conventional activated sludge systems, still widely used to treat wastewater, produce large amounts of solid waste that is commonly landfilled or incinerated. This study addresses the potential use of Hydrothermal Carbonization (HTC) to valorize sewage sludge residues examining the properties of hydrochars depending on HTC process conditions and sewage sludge withdrawal point. With increasing HTC severity (process residence time and temperature), solid yield, total Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) and solid pH decrease while ash content increases. Hydrochars produced from primary (thickened) and secondary (digested and dewatered) sludge show peculiar distinct properties. Hydrochars produced from thickened sludge show good fuel properties in terms of Higher Heating Value (HHV) and reduced ash content. However, relatively high volatile matter and O:C and H:C ratios result in thermal reactivity significantly higher than typical coals. Both series of carbonized secondary sludges show neutral pH, low COD, enhanced phosphorous content and low heavy metals concentration: as a whole, they show properties compatible with their use as soil amendments. View Full-Text
Keywords: sewage sludge; hydrothermal carbonization; hydrochar; solid biofuel; soil amendment sewage sludge; hydrothermal carbonization; hydrochar; solid biofuel; soil amendment
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MDPI and ACS Style

Merzari, F.; Goldfarb, J.; Andreottola, G.; Mimmo, T.; Volpe, M.; Fiori, L. Hydrothermal Carbonization as a Strategy for Sewage Sludge Management: Influence of Process Withdrawal Point on Hydrochar Properties. Energies 2020, 13, 2890. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13112890

AMA Style

Merzari F, Goldfarb J, Andreottola G, Mimmo T, Volpe M, Fiori L. Hydrothermal Carbonization as a Strategy for Sewage Sludge Management: Influence of Process Withdrawal Point on Hydrochar Properties. Energies. 2020; 13(11):2890. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13112890

Chicago/Turabian Style

Merzari, Fabio, Jillian Goldfarb, Gianni Andreottola, Tanja Mimmo, Maurizio Volpe, and Luca Fiori. 2020. "Hydrothermal Carbonization as a Strategy for Sewage Sludge Management: Influence of Process Withdrawal Point on Hydrochar Properties" Energies 13, no. 11: 2890. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13112890

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