STUDIES ON THE INFLUENCE OF SOLID POROUS SUPPORT SYSTEMS (SPSS) ON HIGH SOLID DIGESTION (HSD) OF VEGETABLE MARKET WASTES. VENKATESH AND R. JAYASHREE
Solid waste constitutes a major environmental pollution in urban and semi-urban areas of industrially advanced as well as developing countries of the world. Anaerobic digestion of biodegradable solid wastes is being considered as an effective method of both management of solid wastes and as a renewable source of energy in the form of biogas. Anaerobic digestion is the bacterial fermentation of organic wastes in the absence of free oxygen. Since the vegetable waste forms the major portion of organic waste and generation of biogas seem to be a viable waste management option. The present study focuses, on the anaerobic digestion of vegetable waste using high solid digester (HSD) with and without biofilm support media (BSM). Two laboratory scale digesters of each type (volume -1.1 litres) were fabricated using two inch diameter PVC pipe. Each digester unit was divided into two chambers using PVC perforated disc of 6mm diameter. The digested cow dung slurry (250 ml) from the biogas plant was used as inoculum. Initially, during the startup period there was a steady rise in biogas yield in irregular fashion in all the digesters (454-1600 L kg-1 VS/d) from 2nd to 7th week of operation. This increase in gas production rates may be mainly due to favorable temperature and production of CO2 during the initial stages of operation. However the gas yield decreased during the 8th week and steadily increased from 9th week onwards in all the digesters. The digesters from the 8th week were fed with 100.8 g fresh weight once in every week throughout the period of study. The digester with BSM performed always better than control digesters. The BSM digesters were found to be statistically significant at 99% confidence levels.
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