Anaerobic digestion of algal–bacterial biomass of an Algal Turf Scrubber system

  • This study investigated the anaerobic digestion of an algal–bacterial biofilm grown in artificial wastewater in an Algal Turf Scrubber (ATS). The ATS system was located in a greenhouse (50°54′19ʺN, 6°24′55ʺE, Germany) and was exposed to seasonal conditions during the experiment period. The methane (CH4) potential of untreated algal–bacterial biofilm (UAB) and thermally pretreated biofilm (PAB) using different microbial inocula was determined by anaerobic batch fermentation. Methane productivity of UAB differed significantly between microbial inocula of digested wastepaper, a mixture of manure and maize silage, anaerobic sewage sludge, and percolated green waste. UAB using sewage sludge as inoculum showed the highest methane productivity. The share of methane in biogas was dependent on inoculum. Using PAB, a strong positive impact on methane productivity was identified for the digested wastepaper (116.4%) and a mixture of manure and maize silage (107.4%) inocula. By contrast, the methane yield was significantly reduced for the digested anaerobic sewage sludge (50.6%) and percolated green waste (43.5%) inocula. To further evaluate the potential of algal–bacterial biofilm for biogas production in wastewater treatment and biogas plants in a circular bioeconomy, scale-up calculations were conducted. It was found that a 0.116 km2 ATS would be required in an average municipal wastewater treatment plant which can be viewed as problematic in terms of space consumption. However, a substantial amount of energy surplus (4.7–12.5 MWh a−1) can be gained through the addition of algal–bacterial biomass to the anaerobic digester of a municipal wastewater treatment plant. Wastewater treatment and subsequent energy production through algae show dominancy over conventional technologies.

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Author:Dheeraja CheenakulaORCiD, Kevin HoffstadtORCiD, Simone KrafftORCiD, Diana Reinecke, Holger Klose, Isabel Kuperjans, Markus Grömping
Parent Title (English):Biomass Conversion and Biorefinery
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2022
Date of the Publication (Server):2022/09/12
Tag:Algal Turf Scrubber; Algal–bacterial bioflm; Biogas; Circular bioeconomy; Methane
First Page:15 Seiten
Zugriffsart:open access
Institutes:FH Aachen / Fachbereich Bauingenieurwesen
FH Aachen / Fachbereich Chemie und Biotechnologie
FH Aachen / Fachbereich Energietechnik
FH Aachen / Nowum-Energy
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung