Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 9

Search results for: methanogens

9 Biogas Production from Zebra Manure and Winery Waste Co-Digestion

Authors: Wicleffe Musingarimi


Currently, the rising energy demand as a result of an increase in the world’s population and the sustainable use of abundant natural resources are key issues facing many developed and developing countries including South Africa. Most of the energy to meet this growing demand comes from fossil fuel. Use of fossil fuels has led to environmental problems such air pollution, climate change, and acid rain. In addition, fossil fuels are facing continual depletion, which has led to the rise in oil prices, leading to the global economies melt down. Hence development of alternative clean and renewable energy source is a global priority. Renewable biomass from forest products, agricultural crops, and residues, as well as animal and municipal waste are promising alternatives. South Africa is one of the leading wine producers in the world; leading to a lot of winery waste (ww) being produced which can be used in anaerobic digestion (AD) to produce biogas. Biogas was produced from batch anaerobic digestion of zebra manure (zm) and batch anaerobic co-digestion of winery waste (ww) and zebra manure through water displacement. The batch digester with slurry of winery waste and zebra manure in the weight ratio of 1:2 was operated in a 1L container at 37°C for 30days. Co-digestion of winery waste and zebra manure produced higher amount of biogas as compared to zebra manure alone and winery waste alone. No biogas was produced by batch anaerobic digestion of winery waste alone. Chemical analysis of C/N ratio and total solids (TS) of zebra manure was 21.89 and 25.2 respectively. These values of C/N ratio and TS were quite high compared to values of other studied manures. Zebra manure also revealed unusually high concentration of Fe reaching 3600pm compared to other studies of manure. PCR with communal DNA of the digestate gave a positive hit for the presence of archaea species using standard archea primers; suggesting the presence of methanogens. Methanogens are key microbes in the production of biogas. Therefore, this study demonstrated the potential of zebra manure as an inoculum in the production of biogas.

Keywords: anaerobic digestion, biogas, co-digestion, methanogens

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8 Mitigating Ruminal Methanogenesis Through Genomic and Transcriptomic Approaches

Authors: Muhammad Adeel Arshad, Faiz-Ul Hassan, Yanfen Cheng


According to FAO, enteric methane (CH4) production is about 44% of all greenhouse gas emissions from the livestock sector. Ruminants produce CH4 as a result of fermentation of feed in the rumen especially from roughages which yield more CH4 per unit of biomass ingested as compared to concentrates. Efficient ruminal fermentation is not possible without abating CO2 and CH4. Methane abatement strategies are required to curb the predicted rise in emissions associated with greater ruminant production in future to meet ever increasing animal protein requirements. Ecology of ruminal methanogenesis and avenues for its mitigation can be identified through various genomic and transcriptomic techniques. Programs such as Hungate1000 and the Global Rumen Census have been launched to enhance our understanding about global ruminal microbial communities. Through Hungate1000 project, a comprehensive reference set of rumen microbial genome sequences has been developed from cultivated rumen bacteria and methanogenic archaea along with representative rumen anaerobic fungi and ciliate protozoa cultures. But still many species of rumen microbes are underrepresented especially uncultivable microbes. Lack of sequence information specific to the rumen's microbial community has inhibited efforts to use genomic data to identify specific set of species and their target genes involved in methanogenesis. Metagenomic and metatranscriptomic study of entire microbial rumen populations offer new perspectives to understand interaction of methanogens with other rumen microbes and their potential association with total gas and methane production. Deep understanding of methanogenic pathway will help to devise potentially effective strategies to abate methane production while increasing feed efficiency in ruminants.

Keywords: Genome sequences, Hungate1000, methanogens, ruminal fermentation

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7 The Effects of Nano Zerovalent Iron (nZVI) and Magnesium Oxide Nanoparticles on Methane Production during Anaerobic Digestion of Waste Activated Sludge

Authors: Passkorn Khanthongthip, John T. Novak


Many studies have been reported that the nZVI and MgO NPs were often found in waste activated sludge (WAS). However, little is known about the impact of those NPs on WAS stabilization. The aims of this study were to investigate the effects of both NPs on WAS anaerobic digestion for methane production and to examine the change of metanogenic population under those different environments using qPCR. Four dosages (2, 50, 100, and 200 mg/g-TSS) of MgO NPs were added to four different bottles containing WAS to investigate the impact of MgO NPs on methane production during WAS anaerobic digestion. The effects of nZVI on methane production during WAS anaerobic digestion were also conducted in another four bottles using the same methods described above except that the MgO NPs were replaced by nZVI. A bottle of WAS anaerobic digestion without nanoparticles addition was also operated to serve as a control. It was found that the relative amounts, compared to the control system, of methane production in each WAS anaerobic digestion bottle adding 2, 50, 100, 200 mg/gTSS MgO NPs were 98, 62, 28, and 14 %, respectively. This suggests that higher MgO NPs resulted in lower methane production. The data of batch test for the effects of corresponding released Mg2+ indicated that 50 mg/gTSS MgO NPs or higher could inhibit methane production at least 25%. Moreover, the volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentration was 328, 384, 928, 3,684, and 7,848 mg/L for the control and four WAS anaerobic digestion bottles with 2, 50, 100, 200 mg/gTSS MgO NPs addition, respectively. Higher VFA concentration could reduce pH and subsequently decrease methanogen growth, resulting in lower methane production. The relative numbers of total gene copies of methanogens analyzed from samples taken from WAS anaerobic digestion bottles were approximately 99, 68, 38, and 24 % of control for the addition of 2, 50, 100, and 200 mg/gTSS, respectively. Obviously, the more MgO NPs appeared in sludge anaerobic digestion system, the less methanogens remained. In contrast, the relative amount of methane production found in another four WAS anaerobic digestion bottles adding 2, 50, 100, and 200 mg/gTSS nZVI were 102, 128, 112, and 104 % of the control, respectively. The measurement of methanogenic population indicated that the relative content of methanogen gene copies were 101, 132, 120, and 112 % of those found in control, respectively. Additionally, the cumulative VFA was 320, 234, 308, and 330 mg/L, respectively. This reveals that nZVI addition could assist to increase methanogenic population. Higher amount of methanogen accelerated VFA degradation for greater methane production, resulting in lower VFA accumulation in digesters. Moreover, the data for effects of corresponding released Fe2+ conducted by batch tests suggest that the addition of approximately 50 mg/gTSS nZVI increased methane production by 20%. In conclusion, the presence of MgO NPs appeared to diminish the methane production during WAS anaerobic digestion. Higher MgO NPs dosages resulted in more inhibition on methane production. In contrast, nZVI addition promoted the amount of methanogenic population which facilitated methane production.

Keywords: magnesium oxide nanoparticles, methane production, methanogenic population, nano zerovalent iron

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6 Pre-Treatment of Anodic Inoculum with Nitroethane to Improve Performance of a Microbial Fuel Cell

Authors: Rajesh P.P., Md. Tabish Noori, Makarand M. Ghangrekar


Methanogenic substrate loss is reported to be a major bottleneck in microbial fuel cell which significantly reduces the power production capacity and coulombic efficiency (CE) of microbial fuel cell (MFC). Nitroethane is found to be a potent inhibitor of hydrogenotrophic methanogens in rumen fermentation process. Influence of nitroethane pre-treated sewage sludge inoculum on suppressing the methanogenic activity and enhancing the electrogenesis in MFC was evaluated. MFC inoculated with nitroethane pre-treated anodic inoculum demonstrated a maximum operating voltage of 541 mV, with coulombic efficiency and sustainable volumetric power density of 39.85 % and 14.63 W/m3 respectively. Linear sweep voltammetry indicated a higher electron discharge on the anode surface due to enhancement of electrogenic activity while suppressing methanogenic activity. A 63 % reduction in specific methanogenic activity was observed in anaerobic sludge pre-treated with nitroethane; emphasizing significance of this pretreatment for suppressing methanogenesis and its utility for enhancing electricity generation in MFC.

Keywords: coulombic efficiency, methanogenesis inhibition, microbial fuel cell, nitroethane

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5 The Effectiveness of Sulfate Reducing Bacteria in Minimizing Methane and Sludge Production from Palm Oil Mill Effluent (POME)

Authors: K. Abdul Halim, E. L. Yong


Palm oil industry is a major revenue earner in Malaysia, despite the growth of the industry is synonymous with a massive production of agro-industrial wastewater. Through the oil extraction processes, palm oil mill effluent (POME) contributes to the largest liquid wastes generated. Due to the high amount of organic compound, POME can cause inland water pollution if discharged untreated into the water course as well as affect the aquatic ecosystem. For more than 20 years, Malaysia adopted the conventional biological treatment known as lagoon system that apply biological treatment. Besides having difficulties in complying with the standard, a large build up area is needed and retention time is higher. Although anaerobic digester is more favorable, this process comes along with enormous volumes of sludge and methane gas, demanding attention from the mill operators. In order to reduce the sludge production, denitrifiers are to be removed first. Sulfate reducing bacteria has shown the capability to inhibit the growth of methanogens. This is expected to substantially reduce both the sludge and methane production in anaerobic digesters. In this paper, the effectiveness of sulfate reducing bacteria in minimizing sludge and methane will be examined.

Keywords: methane reduction, palm oil mill effluent, sludge minimization, sulfate reducing bacteria, sulfate reduction

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4 The Feasibility of Anaerobic Digestion at 45⁰C

Authors: Nuruol S. Mohd, Safia Ahmed, Rumana Riffat, Baoqiang Li


Anaerobic digestion at mesophilic and thermophilic temperatures have been widely studied and evaluated by numerous researchers. Limited extensive research has been conducted on anaerobic digestion in the intermediate zone of 45°C, mainly due to the notion that limited microbial activity occurs within this zone. The objectives of this research were to evaluate the performance and the capability of anaerobic digestion at 45°C in producing class A biosolids, in comparison to a mesophilic and thermophilic anaerobic digestion system operated at 35°C and 55°C, respectively. In addition to that, the investigation on the possible inhibition factors affecting the performance of the digestion system at this temperature will be conducted as well. The 45°C anaerobic digestion systems were not able to achieve comparable methane yield and high-quality effluent compared to the mesophilic system, even though the systems produced biogas with about 62-67% methane. The 45°C digesters suffered from high acetate accumulation, but sufficient buffering capacity was observed as the pH, alkalinity and volatile fatty acids (VFA)-to-alkalinity ratio were within recommended values. The accumulation of acetate observed in 45°C systems were presumably due to the high temperature which contributed to high hydrolysis rate. Consequently, it produced a large amount of toxic salts that combined with the substrate making them not readily available to be consumed by methanogens. Acetate accumulation, even though contributed to 52 to 71% reduction in acetate degradation process, could not be considered as completely inhibitory. Additionally, at 45°C, no ammonia inhibition was observed and the digesters were able to achieve volatile solids (VS) reduction of 47.94±4.17%. The pathogen counts were less than 1,000 MPN/g total solids, thus, producing Class A biosolids.

Keywords: 45°C anaerobic digestion, acetate accumulation, class A biosolids, salt toxicity

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3 Process Development for the Conversion of Organic Waste into Valuable Products

Authors: Ife O. Bolaji


Environmental concerns arising from the use of fossil fuels has increased the interest in the development of renewable and sustainable sources of energy. This would minimize the dependence on fossil fuels and serve as future alternatives. Organic wastes contain carbohydrates, proteins and lipids, which can be utilised as carbon sources for the production of bio-based products. Cellulose is the most abundant natural biopolymer, being the main structural component of lignocellulosic materials. The aim of this project is to develop a biological process for the hydrolysis and fermentation of organic wastes into ethanol and organic acids. The hydrolysis and fermentation processes are integrated in a single vessel using undefined mixed culture microorganisms. The anaerobic fermentation of microcrystalline cellulose was investigated in continuous and batch reactors at 25°C with an appropriate growth medium for cellulase formation, hydrolysis, and fermentation. The reactors were inoculated with soil (B1, C1, C3) or sludge from an anaerobic digester (B2, C2) and the breakdown of cellulose was monitored by measuring the production of ethanol, organic acids and the residual cellulose. The batch reactors B1 and B2 showed negligible microbial activity due to inhibition while the continuous reactors, C1, C2 and C3, exhibited little cellulose hydrolysis which was concealed by the cellulose accumulation in the reactor. At the end of the continuous operation, the reactors C1, C2 and C3 were operated under batch conditions. 48%, 34% and 42% cellulose had been fermented by day 88, 55 and 55 respectively of the batch fermentation. Acetic acid, ethanol, propionic acid and butyric acids were the main fermentation products in the reactors. A stable concentration of 0.6 g/l ethanol and 5 g/L acetic acid was maintained in C3 for several weeks due to reduced activity of methanogens caused by the decrease in pH. Thus far, the results have demonstrated that mixed microbial culture is capable of hydrolysing and fermenting cellulose under lenient conditions. The fermentation of cellulose has been found effective in a combination of continuous and batch processes.

Keywords: cellulose, hydrolysis, mixed culture, organic waste

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2 Application of Customized Bioaugmentation Inocula to Alleviate Ammonia Toxicity in CSTR Anaerobic Digesters

Authors: Yixin Yan, Miao Yan, Irini Angelidaki, Ioannis Fotidis


Ammonia, which derives from the degradation of urea and protein-substrates, is the major toxicant of the commercial anaerobic digestion reactors causing loses of up to 1/3 of their practical biogas production, which reflects directly on the overall revenue of the plants. The current experimental work is aiming to alleviate the ammonia inhibition in anaerobic digestion (AD) process by developing an innovative bioaugmentation method of ammonia tolerant methanogenic consortia. The ammonia tolerant consortia were cultured in batch reactors and immobilized together with biochar in agar (customized inocula). Three continuous stirred-tank reactors (CSTR), fed with the organic fraction of municipal solid waste at a hydraulic retention time of 15 days and operated at thermophilic (55°C) conditions were assessed. After an ammonia shock of 4 g NH4+-N L-1, the customized inocula were bioaugmented into the CSTR reactors to alleviate ammonia toxicity effect on AD process. Recovery rate of methane production and methanogenic activity will be assessed to evaluate the bioaugmentation performance, while 16s rRNA gene sequence will be used to reveal the difference of microbial community changes through bioaugmentation. At the microbial level, the microbial community structures of the four reactors will be analysed to find the mechanism of bioaugmentation. Changes in hydrogen formation potential will be used to predict direct interspecies electron transfer (DIET) between ammonia tolerant methanogens and syntrophic bacteria. This experimental work is expected to create bioaugmentation inocula that will be easy to obtain, transport, handled and bioaugment in AD reactors to efficiently alleviate the ammonia toxicity, without alternating any of the other operational parameters including the ammonia-rich feedstocks.

Keywords: artisanal fishing waste, acidogenesis, volatile fatty acids, pH, inoculum/substrate ratio

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1 Biogas Enhancement Using Iron Oxide Nanoparticles and Multi-Wall Carbon Nanotubes

Authors: John Justo Ambuchi, Zhaohan Zhang, Yujie Feng


Quick development and usage of nanotechnology have resulted to massive use of various nanoparticles, such as iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) and multi-wall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs). Thus, this study investigated the role of IONPs and MWCNTs in enhancing bioenergy recovery. Results show that IONPs at a concentration of 750 mg/L and MWCNTs at a concentration of 1500 mg/L induced faster substrate utilization and biogas production rates than the control. IONPs exhibited higher carbon oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency than MWCNTs while on the contrary, MWCNT performance on biogas generation was remarkable than IONPs. Furthermore, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) investigation revealed extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) excretion from AGS had an interaction with nanoparticles. This interaction created a protective barrier to microbial consortia hence reducing their cytotoxicity. Microbial community analyses revealed genus predominance of bacteria of Anaerolineaceae and Longilinea. Their role in biodegradation of the substrate could have highly been boosted by nanoparticles. The archaea predominance of the genus level of Methanosaeta and Methanobacterium enhanced methanation process. The presence of bacteria of genus Geobacter was also reported. Their presence might have significantly contributed to direct interspecies electron transfer in the system. Exposure of AGS to nanoparticles promoted direct interspecies electron transfer among the anaerobic fermenting bacteria and their counterpart methanogens during the anaerobic digestion process. This results provide useful insightful information in understanding the response of microorganisms to IONPs and MWCNTs in the complex natural environment.

Keywords: anaerobic granular sludge, extracellular polymeric substances, iron oxide nanoparticles, multi-wall carbon nanotubes

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