Potential for valorization of dehydrated paper pulp sludge for biogas production: Addition of selected hydrolytic enzymes in semi-continuous anaerobic digestion assays

The effects of five commercially available hydrolytic enzyme additives on methane yields from dehydrated paper pulp sludge (DPPS) were determined in 5L pilot-scale reactors operated in semi-continuous mode for 60 days. Methane production was 40% and 43% higher in reactors receiving Novozymes and Novalin additives, respectively, compared to controls. Effects of time of DPPS inclusion on bacterial and archaeal microbial communities were many times larger than effects of enzyme type as enzyme addition did not produce rearrangements larger than random fluctuations observed in reactors receiving only DPPS. The ratio between volatile organic acids and alkalinity signified progressive decrease in process stability until day 45 irrespective of enzyme supplementation. Complementation with clarified pig slurry (1.5% vol.) for subsequent 15 days effectively stabilized process parameters and was sufficient for microbial communities to maintain DPPS hydrolytic capacity and process additional carbon flow derived from hydrolytic activity of enzyme additives. Consequently, initially unadapted full-scale biogas plant inoculum was capable of significantly increased methane yields from DPPS. Based on annual DPPS availability in EU the potential for additional energy recovery was estimated to be in the range of nearly 1 TJ.

» Author: Sabina Kolbl, Petra Forte-Tav?er, Blaž Stres

» Reference: Energy, Volume 126

» Publication Date: 01/05/2017

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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement N° 690103