Influence of wastewater characteristics on methane potential in food-processing industry wastewaters

Larisa Maya Altamira, Anders Baun, Irini Angelidaki, Jens Ejbye Schmidt

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In this study, we identified the influence of wastewater characteristics on the theoretical and practical methane potential using different food industrial wastewaters as substrates. Ten composite wastewater samples from five industries were investigated. The ultimate practical methane yields (Bo) were compared to the theoretical methane yields (Bo,th) in order to evaluate the biodegradability of the tested wastewaters and the influence of their physico-chemical characteristics. The analytical method applied to quantify the wastewaters’ organic content proved to influence the estimation of their theoretical yields. The substrate:inoculum ratio as well as the dilution factor of the wastewaters influenced the ultimate practical methane yields differently in each of the wastewaters assessed. Substrate chemical oxygen demand (COD) concentrations did not present any influence on ultimate practical methane yields; on the other hand, it was found that they were affected positively by concentrations of total inorganic carbon when wastewaters were 25% and 50% diluted and affected negatively by concentrations of total acetate when wastewaters were undiluted. Carbohydrate and protein concentrations affected negatively the maximum achieved practical methane yields.
Original languageEnglish
JournalWater Research
Issue number8-9
Pages (from-to)2195-2203
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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