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


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

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