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    Effect of thermal pretreatment at 70 degrees C for one hour (EU hygienization conditions) of various organic wastes on methane production under mesophilic anaerobic digestion

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    International audienceThe impact of hygienization as mild thermal pretreatment on the methane production of various organic wastes was investigated, including digestate issued from hydrolysis tank, thickened sludge from a municipal wastewater treatment plant (MWWTP sludge) and from a mixed domestic-industrial wastewater treatment plant (D-I WWTP sludge), sludge from a meat-processing plant (MP sludge), sieving rejection from a pork slaughterhouse, pork liver, cattle slurry, cattle scraping slurry and date seeds. They were thermally pretreated at 70 degrees C for one hour and subsequently put into AD digesters incubated at 37 degrees C for individual methane potential test. The modified Gompertz model was employed to evaluate the kinetic parameters of methane production curves (R-2 = 0.944-0.999). The results were compared with the untreated samples. Significant enhancement of methane potentials induced by thermal treatment (p < 0.05) was observed when it comes to the pork liver (+8.6%), the slaughterhouse sieving rejection (+11.1%), the thickened MWWTP sludge (+12.5%) and the digestate issued from hydrolysis tank (+18.0%). The maximum methane production rates of the 4 substrates mentioned above were increased by thermal pretreatment as well (from 13.5% to 64%, p < 0.05). The lag time of the methane production was shortened for the digestate from hydrolysis tank and the MWWTP sludge (by 48.6% and 62.2% respectively, p < 0.05). No significant enhancement was obtained for the cattle slurry, the cattle scraping slurry and the D-I WWTP sludge. Additionally, the maximum methane production rate and the methane potential were reduced by thermal pretreatment for the MP sludge and the date seeds respectively (p < 0.05). In this paper, possible mechanisms were discussed to explain the different methane production behaviors of substrates after the mild thermal pretreatment