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Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2022) | Viewed by 14786

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences, Department of Microsystems, University of Southeast Norway, N-3184 Borre, Norway
Interests: bioelectrochemistry; microbes-material interaction; electrode material; CO2 and gas conversion
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Guest Editor
Department of Process, Energy and Environmental Technology, University of South-Eastern Norway, 3918 Porsgrunn, Norway
Interests: anaerobic digestion; thermochemical pretreatment; AD modeling; high rate AD

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Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
Interests: biogas technology; biowaste valorization and resource recovery; renewable energy systems; energy-food-water system; solar energy applications

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a versatile and widely applied technology for biogas production from the microbial degradation of organic waste. Globally, AD installations for biogas production and utilization have been significantly increasing to fulfill the renewable energy demand. AD technology offers numerous benefits extending from organic solid waste treatment, renewable fuel production, greenhouse gas emission control by capturing methane (CH4), and improving rural communities' socio-economic livelihoods, especially in developing countries. However, AD also faces challenges, in particular the competitiveness of feedstock availability, digester efficiency, CH4 loss from the process, and a lack of anaerobic process monitoring and control. Some strategies have recently been applied, ranging from feedstock pretreatment, automation, optimization of the microbial degradation process, and operational parameter optimization for AD stimulation. This Special Issue aims to invite scientific papers on anaerobic digestion and the sustainability aspect of biogas production.

Biogas contains approximately 60% CH4, 40% carbon dioxide (CO2), with minor concentrations of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), ammonia (NH3), and others. To meet natural gas specifications, the biogas needs to be upgraded to 95–97 % CH4, called biomethane, which has been broadly applied as transportation fuel, gas grid injection, and combined heat and power production. Recent technological innovation demonstrates shifting AD to anaerobic fermentation to enhance the process's efficiency, diversifying feedstock utilization such as syngas and flue gases, and also methanol production from CH4. Significant advances have been made in the innovation of novel processes, feedstock utilization, understanding of microbial dynamics, digestate utilization, digestate post-treatment, and sustainability assessment. This Special Issue entitled “Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies” invites submissions of original research articles or critical reviews to cover such research topics.

Dr. Nabin Aryal
Dr. Wenche Hennie Bergland
Dr. Sunil Prasad Lohani
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • anaerobic digestion (AD)
  • feedstock pretreatments
  • syngas and flue gas methanation
  • conductive particle application in AD
  • biological system for biogas upgrading
  • methane loss from AD
  • bio electrochemical process
  • novel and hybrid/integrated process
  • mathematical modeling
  • techno-economic and sustainability assessment
  • life cycle assessment of AD
  • supply-chain of substrate
  • post-treatment of digestate

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 8469 KiB  
Article
Anaerobic Co-Digestion of Food Waste with Livestock Manure at Ambient Temperature: A Biogas Based Circular Economy and Sustainable Development Goals
by Bipasyana Dhungana, Sunil Prasad Lohani and Michael Marsolek
Sustainability 2022, 14(6), 3307; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14063307 - 11 Mar 2022
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 4800
Abstract
A shift from a linear economy to a circular economy of resource consumption is vital for diverting the value from lost resources to resource-efficient products towards developing a sustainable system. Household digesters provide one opportunity to create a biogas-based circular economy. Because household [...] Read more.
A shift from a linear economy to a circular economy of resource consumption is vital for diverting the value from lost resources to resource-efficient products towards developing a sustainable system. Household digesters provide one opportunity to create a biogas-based circular economy. Because household digesters are typically fed a wide and variable range of substrates, it is important to determine the ideal mixing ratios for them. In this study, an anaerobic digester startup process was analyzed and an assessment of anaerobic co-digestion of food waste with different livestock manures was carried out at ambient temperatures. Food waste (FW), cow manure (CM), poultry litter (PL) and goat manure (GM) were co-digested at mixing ratios (FW:PL:CM) of 2:1:1, 2:2:1, 1:1:2, 1:1:1 (wt/wt) and FW:PL:GM at mixing ratios of 2:1:1 and 1:1:2, at an organic loading rate of 1 g volatile solid (VS)/L/day, and 8% total solids. A maximum methane yield was obtained from co-digestion of FW:PL:GM at a mixing ratio of 2:1:1 in autumn-to-winter conditions, 21–10 °C, while the mixing ratio of FW:PL:CM at 2:2:1, showed negligible methane production under the same temperature condition. This study suggests that co-digestion of food waste and poultry litter with goat manure yields more biogas than other substrate combinations. Therefore, selecting suitable co-substrates with an optimized mixing ratio can promote several key indicators of a biogas-based circular economy towards achieving sustainable development goals 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 13 and 15. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies)
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20 pages, 2277 KiB  
Article
Impact of Granular Activated Carbon on Anaerobic Process and Microbial Community Structure during Mesophilic and Thermophilic Anaerobic Digestion of Chicken Manure
by Elvira E. Ziganshina, Svetlana S. Bulynina and Ayrat M. Ziganshin
Sustainability 2022, 14(1), 447; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010447 - 1 Jan 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2413
Abstract
In this work, the impact of granular activated carbon (GAC) on the mesophilic and thermophilic anaerobic digestion of chicken manure and the structure of microbial communities was investigated. These results demonstrated that GAC supplementation effectively enhanced the consumption of produced organic acids in [...] Read more.
In this work, the impact of granular activated carbon (GAC) on the mesophilic and thermophilic anaerobic digestion of chicken manure and the structure of microbial communities was investigated. These results demonstrated that GAC supplementation effectively enhanced the consumption of produced organic acids in the mesophilic and thermophilic batch tests, accompanied by faster biomethane production in the presence of GAC than from reactors without GAC. However, since the free ammonia level was 3–6 times higher in the thermophilic reactors, this led to the instability of the anaerobic digestion process of the nitrogen-rich substrate at thermophilic temperatures. Bacteroidia and Clostridia were the two main bacterial classes in the mesophilic reactors, whereas the class Clostridia had a competitive advantage over other groups in the thermophilic systems. The archaeal communities in the mesophilic reactors were mainly represented by representatives of the genera Methanosarcina, Methanobacterium, and Methanotrix, whereas the archaeal communities in the thermophilic reactors were mainly represented by members of the genera Methanosarcina, Methanoculleus, and Methanothermobacter. New data obtained in this research will help control and manage biogas reactors in the presence of GAC at different temperatures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies)
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10 pages, 1501 KiB  
Article
Biochemical Methane Potential and Kinetic Parameters of Goat Manure at Various Inoculum to Substrate Ratios
by Harjinder Kaur and Raghava R Kommalapati
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12806; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212806 - 19 Nov 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2131
Abstract
Anaerobic digestion is a proven technology for managing manure while harvesting natural gas and digestate as a biofertilizer. The biochemical methane potential (BMP), biodegradability, and kinetic parameters of goat manure (GM) were investigated at different inoculum to substrate ratios (ISRs). The cumulative biomethane [...] Read more.
Anaerobic digestion is a proven technology for managing manure while harvesting natural gas and digestate as a biofertilizer. The biochemical methane potential (BMP), biodegradability, and kinetic parameters of goat manure (GM) were investigated at different inoculum to substrate ratios (ISRs). The cumulative biomethane yields at the ISRs of 0.0, 0.3, 0.5, 0.8, 1.1, 1.3, and 2.6 were 191.7, 214.3, 214.9, 225.9, 222.1, 222.8, and 229.9 mL gvs−1, respectively. The biomethane yield at all ISRs was significantly higher than control (0 ISR). Above the ISR of 0.0, the biomethane yield was similar among all ISRs. The biodegradability of GM at the ISRs of 0.3, 0.5, 0.8, 1.1, 1.3, and 2.6 varied between 73.3% and 78.7% and was statistically similar. In total, 90% of the yield was observed in 31 and 32 days in control and all other ISRs, respectively. The modified Gompertz equation fitted very well (R2 = 0.99) to the BMP of GM but predicted the lag phase (λ) of 3.2–5.2 days against observed 8–10 days among control and other ISRs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies)
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Review

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27 pages, 559 KiB  
Review
Digestate Post-Treatment Strategies for Additional Biogas Recovery: A Review
by Cristiane Romio, Michael Vedel Wegener Kofoed and Henrik Bjarne Møller
Sustainability 2021, 13(16), 9295; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13169295 - 19 Aug 2021
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3851
Abstract
Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a process in which microorganisms, under oxygen-free conditions, convert organic matter into biogas and digestate. Normally, only 40–70% of biomass is converted into biogas; therefore, digestate still contains significant amounts of degradable organic matter and biogas potential. The recovery [...] Read more.
Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a process in which microorganisms, under oxygen-free conditions, convert organic matter into biogas and digestate. Normally, only 40–70% of biomass is converted into biogas; therefore, digestate still contains significant amounts of degradable organic matter and biogas potential. The recovery of this residual biogas potential could optimize substrate utilization and lower methane emissions during digestate storage and handling. Post-treatment methods have been studied with the aim of enhancing the recovery of biogas from digestate. This review summarizes the studies in which these methods have been applied to agricultural and wastewater digestate and gives a detailed overview of the existing scientific knowledge in the field. The current studies have shown large variation in outcomes, which reflects differences in treatment conditions and digestate compositions. While studies involving biological post-treatment of digestate are still limited, mechanical methods have been relatively more explored. In some cases, they could increase methane yields of digestate; however, the extra gain in methane has often not covered treatment energy inputs. Thermal and chemical methods have been studied the most and have yielded some promising results. Despite all the research conducted in the area, several knowledge gaps still should be addressed. For a more thorough insight of the pros and cons within post-treatment, more research where the effects of the treatments are tested in continuous AD systems, along with detailed economic analysis, should be performed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability and Anaerobic Digestion Technologies)
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