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Special Issue "Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water and Wastewater Treatment".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 12 December 2019.

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sheng Chang

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Canada
Website | E-Mail
Interests: anaerobic digestion; biological and thermal hydrolysis for anaerobic digestion enhancement; biological nutrient removal; EPS characterization and membrane fouling
Guest Editor
Mr. Youngseck Hong

Suez Water Technologies and Solutions
E-Mail
Interests: anaerobic treatment; digestate treatment; GHG reduction technology; resource recovery; cost reduction engineering; technology commercialization
Guest Editor
Dr. Ewan McAdam

Cranfield Water Science Institute, Cranfield University, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: anaerobic MBR; dissolved methane recovery; biogas treatment with membranes; resource recovery; energy generation with hybrid membranes; water reuse; membrane crystallisation
Guest Editor
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Chao Jin

1. School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-Sen University, China
2. Department of Systems Design Engineering, University of Waterloo, Canada
E-Mail
Interests: sludge treatment; sustainability analysis; anammox; MBR; mass transfer in porous media; data driven approach for process control

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

With an objective to provide a comprehensive review on the recent development in advanced anaerobic digestion research, we would like to call for submissions for a Special Issue from both Scientific communities and Industrial sectors for original research papers, short communications, research/industrial notes, and state-of-the-art literature review articles on various aspects of recent progresses of anaerobic digestion technologies.

The world economic model is currently undergoing a paradigm shift from linear, waste-producing, economies to circular, waste-repurposing economies. Anaerobic digestion (AD) processes that can recover water, usable methane gas and reduce GHG emssion is a crucial technology of waste-to-resource. The recent emphasis on energy and resource recovery has driven AD to achieve higher biogas production, enhanced degradation of organics, increased treatment capacity and beneficial use of digested biosolids. Technologies to enhance the energy and resource recovery of AD, such as thermophilic digestion, temperature-phased anaerobic digestion, dry anaerobic digestion, chemical, physical, biological pretreatment and bioelectrochemical anaerobic reactor have gained much attention in recent years. This Special Issue will cover research and development of anaerobic digestion pretreatment, advanced anaerobic digestion, and anaerobic digestion post-treatment on aspects that include process mechanisms and operation; optimization, modeling, and applications; energy balance and economic analysis; and treatment and management of anaerobic digestate. It is expected that this Species Issues will exert a significant impact on the future research development and applications of advanced anaerobic digestion technologies.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sheng Chang
Mr. Youngseck Hong
Dr. Ewan McAdam
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Chao Jin
Guest Editor

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 papers will be 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. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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 1600 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 treatment
  • biological hydrolysis
  • theraml hydrolysis
  • checmico-physical pretremtent
  • digestate treatment
  • biosolids
  • co-digestion
  • economic analysis
  • GHG reduction
  • energy and resource recovery

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Metagenomics Response of Anaerobic Ammonium Oxidation (anammox) Bacteria to Bio-Refractory Humic Substances in Wastewater
Water 2019, 11(2), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11020365
Received: 28 December 2018 / Revised: 10 February 2019 / Accepted: 11 February 2019 / Published: 21 February 2019
PDF Full-text (1958 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Anammox-based processes have been widely applied for the treatment of wastewater (e.g., wastewater irrigation systems and constructed wetland) which consists of bio-refractory humic substances. Nonetheless, the impacts of bio-refractory humic substances on anammox consortia are rarely reported. In the present study, three identical [...] Read more.
Anammox-based processes have been widely applied for the treatment of wastewater (e.g., wastewater irrigation systems and constructed wetland) which consists of bio-refractory humic substances. Nonetheless, the impacts of bio-refractory humic substances on anammox consortia are rarely reported. In the present study, three identical lab-scale anammox reactors (i.e., HS0, HS1 and HS10), two of which were dosed with humic substances at 1 and 10 mg·L−1, respectively, were operated for nearly one year. The long-term operation of the reactors showed that the presence of humic substances in influent had no significant influence on nitrogen removal rates. Despite this, comparative metagenomics showed changes in anammox microbiota structure during the exposure to humic substance; e.g., the relative abundance of Candidatus Kuenenia was lower in HS10 (18.5%) than that in HS0 (22.8%) and HS1 (21.7%). More specifically, a lower level of humic substances (1 mg·L−1) in influent led to an increase of genes responsible for signal transduction, likely due to the role of humic substances as electron shuttles. In contrast, a high level of humic substances (10 mg·L−1) resulted in a slight decrease of functional genes associated with anammox metabolism. This may partially be due to the biodegradation of the humic substances. In addition, the lower dosage of humic substances (1 mg·L−1) also stimulated the abundance of hzs and hdh, which encode two important enzymes in anammox reaction. Overall, this study indicated that the anammox system could work stably over a long period under humic substances, and that the process was feasible for leachate treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle
Nitrogen Removal Characteristics and Comparison of the Microbial Community Structure in Different Anaerobic Ammonia Oxidation Reactors
Water 2019, 11(2), 230; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11020230
Received: 21 December 2018 / Revised: 24 January 2019 / Accepted: 26 January 2019 / Published: 29 January 2019
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Abstract
Nitrogen removal characteristics and the comparison of the microbial community structure were investigated in different anaerobic ammonia oxidation (Anammox) reactors: an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR) and a biofilter reactor. The Anammox systems were inoculated with sludge from the second settling tank of [...] Read more.
Nitrogen removal characteristics and the comparison of the microbial community structure were investigated in different anaerobic ammonia oxidation (Anammox) reactors: an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR) and a biofilter reactor. The Anammox systems were inoculated with sludge from the second settling tank of a wastewater treatment plant in Guangzhou, China. After successful start up of Anammox, the microbial community structure of different Anammox reactors were studied through high-throughput sequencing. The results showed that anaerobic ammonium oxidation in the ASBR reactor could successfully start up after 134 days, while Anammox in the biofilter could start up after 114 days. In both systems, total nitrogen removal was at 80% after more than 200 days of operation. The diversity of denitrifying microorganisms was high in both reactors, with Planctomycetes as the main taxa. Anammox bacteria belonging to the genera Candidatus Anammoxoglobus and Kuenenia, were dominant in the ASBR, while all three genera of Candidatus, Anammoxoglobus, Kuenenia, and Brocadia, could be detected in the biofilter reactor. Therefore, the biofilter starts up faster than the ASBR, and contains richer species, which makes it more suitable to domesticate Anammox bacteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Open AccessArticle
The Performance and Microbial Community Identification in Mesophilic and Atmospheric Anaerobic Membrane Bioreactor for Municipal Wastewater Treatment Associated with Different Hydraulic Retention Times
Water 2019, 11(1), 160; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11010160
Received: 5 December 2018 / Revised: 7 January 2019 / Accepted: 14 January 2019 / Published: 17 January 2019
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2098 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The anaerobic membrane bioreactors (AnMBR) with ring membrane module were operated under mesophilic temperature (M-AnMBR) and atmospheric temperature (A-AnMBR). Compared to the M-AnMBR, the removal efficiency of the A-AnMBR was found to be lower and the faster membrane fouling occurred in the A-AnMBR [...] Read more.
The anaerobic membrane bioreactors (AnMBR) with ring membrane module were operated under mesophilic temperature (M-AnMBR) and atmospheric temperature (A-AnMBR). Compared to the M-AnMBR, the removal efficiency of the A-AnMBR was found to be lower and the faster membrane fouling occurred in the A-AnMBR under corresponding hydraulic retention time (HRT). The MiSeq high-throughput sequencing was applied to analyze the microbial community structure. The HRT change had different effects on the community richness and diversity of the cake and bulk sludge. The abundance of phylum Proteobacteria in the M-AnMBR was higher than that in the A-AnMBR, which should account for the higher removal of nutrients in the M-AnMBR. The faster membrane fouling would occur in the A-AnMBR due to the relatively high abundance of Bacteroidetes in the bulk sludge and cake sludge. Moreover, specific comparison down to the genus level showed that the dominant abundant bacterial genera were Candidate division OP8 norank and Anaerolineaceae uncultured in the cake sludge for M-AnMBR, and were VadinHA17 norank, WCHB1-69 norank, VadinBC27 wastewater-sludge group, and Synergistaceae uncultured in the cake sludge for A-AnMBR The different representative genera with the variation of the HRTs for the two bioreactors might indicate the different performance between the two AnMBRs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Open AccessArticle
Influence of Temperature on Biogas Production Efficiency and Microbial Community in a Two-Phase Anaerobic Digestion System
Water 2019, 11(1), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11010133
Received: 14 November 2018 / Revised: 16 December 2018 / Accepted: 28 December 2018 / Published: 12 January 2019
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2601 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this study, the influence of temperature on biogas production efficiency and the microbial community structure was investigated in a two-phase anaerobic digestion reactor for co-digestion of cow manure and corn straw. The results illustrated that the contents of solluted chemical oxygen demand [...] Read more.
In this study, the influence of temperature on biogas production efficiency and the microbial community structure was investigated in a two-phase anaerobic digestion reactor for co-digestion of cow manure and corn straw. The results illustrated that the contents of solluted chemical oxygen demand (SCOD) and volatile fatty acid (VFA) in the acidogenic phase and biogas production in the methanogenic phase maintained relatively higher levels at temperatures ranging from 35–25 °C. The methane content of biogas production could be maintained higher than 50% at temperatures above 25 °C. The microbial community structure analysis indicated that the dominant functional bacteria were Acinetobacter, Acetitomaculum, and Bacillus in the acidogenic phase and Cenarchaeum in the methanogenic phase at 35–25 °C. However, the performances of the acidogenic phase and the methanogenic phase could be significantly decreased at a lower temperature of 20 °C, and microbial activity was inhibited obviously. Accordingly, a low temperature was adverse for the performance of the acidogenic and methanogenic phases, while moderate temperatures above 25 °C were more conducive to high biogas production efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Open AccessArticle
Temperature-Phased Biological Hydrolysis and Thermal Hydrolysis Pretreatment for Anaerobic Digestion Performance Enhancement
Water 2018, 10(12), 1812; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10121812
Received: 8 November 2018 / Revised: 2 December 2018 / Accepted: 6 December 2018 / Published: 9 December 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1570 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Thermal hydrolysis (TH) and biological hydrolysis (BH) are two main and growing anaerobic digestion pretreatment technologies. In this study, municipal wastewater sludge samples were collected from the Guelph Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) in Ontario, Canada. The effects of temperature on BH treatment, including [...] Read more.
Thermal hydrolysis (TH) and biological hydrolysis (BH) are two main and growing anaerobic digestion pretreatment technologies. In this study, municipal wastewater sludge samples were collected from the Guelph Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) in Ontario, Canada. The effects of temperature on BH treatment, including BH at 42 °C (BH42), 42 °C followed by 55 °C (BH42+55), 55 °C followed by 42 °C (BH55+42), and 55 °C (BH55) were evaluated for anaerobic digestion performance enhancement and compared with TH treatment at 165 °C. The TH, BH42, BH42+55, BH55+42, and BH55 treatments caused the reduction of volatile suspended solids (VSS) by 22.6%, 17.5%, 24.6%, 23.1%, and 25.9%, respectively. The soluble chemical oxygen demand (sCOD) content of the sludge increased by 377.5%, 323.8%, 301.3%, 286.9%, and 221.7% by the TH, BH55, BH42+55, BH55+42, and BH42 treatments, respectively. Volatile fatty acids (VFA) constituted around 40% of the sCOD in the BH-treated sludge and 6% in the TH-treated sludge. The cumulative methane yields (NmLCH4/g COD fed) of sludge treated by BH55+42 and TH were respectively 23% and 20% higher than that of the untreated sludge. For BH pretreatment, sludge treated by BH55+42 produced more methane than those treated by BH42+55, BH55, and BH42. The methane yields of the combined sludge treated by the TH and BH55+42 treatments were in the ranges of 248.9 NmLCH4/g COD to 266.1 NmLCH4/g COD fed, and 255.3 NmLCH4/g COD to 282.2 NmLCH4/g COD fed, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Biochemical Methane Potential (BMP) Assay Method for Anaerobic Digestion Research
Water 2019, 11(5), 921; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11050921
Received: 16 March 2019 / Revised: 27 April 2019 / Accepted: 28 April 2019 / Published: 1 May 2019
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Abstract
Biochemical methane potential (BMP) tests are widely used for characterizing a substrate’s influence on the anaerobic digestion process. As of 2018, there continues to be a lack of standardization of units and techniques, which impacts the comparability and validity of BMP results. However, [...] Read more.
Biochemical methane potential (BMP) tests are widely used for characterizing a substrate’s influence on the anaerobic digestion process. As of 2018, there continues to be a lack of standardization of units and techniques, which impacts the comparability and validity of BMP results. However, BMP methods continue to evolve, and key aspects are studied to further eliminate systematic errors. This paper aims to update these key aspects with the latest research progress both to introduce the importance of each variable to those new to BMP measurements and to show the complexity required to design an accurate BMP test. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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Open AccessReview
Influence of Pre-Hydrolysis on Sewage Treatment in an Up-Flow Anaerobic Sludge BLANKET (UASB) Reactor: A Review
Water 2019, 11(2), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/w11020372
Received: 18 December 2018 / Revised: 14 February 2019 / Accepted: 15 February 2019 / Published: 21 February 2019
PDF Full-text (8346 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) process has emerged as a promising high-rate anaerobic digestion technology for the treatment of low- to high-strength soluble and complex wastewaters. Sewage, a complex wastewater, contains 30–70% particulate chemical oxygen demand (CODP). These particulate organics [...] Read more.
The up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) process has emerged as a promising high-rate anaerobic digestion technology for the treatment of low- to high-strength soluble and complex wastewaters. Sewage, a complex wastewater, contains 30–70% particulate chemical oxygen demand (CODP). These particulate organics degrade at a slower rate than the soluble organics found in sewage. Accumulation of non-degraded suspended solids can lead to a reduction of active biomass in the reactor and hence a deterioration in its performance in terms of acid accumulation and poor biogas production. Hydrolysis of the CODP in sewage prior to UASB reactor will ensure an increased organic loading rate and better UASB performance. While single-stage UASB reactors have been studied extensively, the two-phase full-scale treatment approach (i.e., a hydrolysis unit followed by an UASB reactor) has still not yet been commercialized worldwide. The concept of treating sewage containing particulate organics via a two-phase approach involves first hydrolyzing and acidifying the volatile suspended solids without losing carbon (as methane) in the first reactor and then treating the soluble sewage in the UASB reactor. This work reviews the available literature to outline critical findings related to the treatment of sewage with and without hydrolysis before the UASB reactor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Enhancement of Anaerobic Digestion for Energy and Resource Recovery)
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