1 Section for Sustainable Biotechnology, Copenhagen, The Faculty of Engineering and Science, Aalborg University, VBN2 Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, The Faculty of Engineering and Science, Aalborg University, VBN3 The Faculty of Engineering and Science (ENG), Aalborg University, VBN4 Aalborg University Copenhagen, The Faculty of Humanities, Aalborg University, VBN
The continuously increasing demand for renewable energy sources renders anaerobic digestion to one of the most promising technologies for renewable energy production. Due to the animal production intensification, manure is being used as the primary feedstock for most of the biogas plants. Thus, their economical profitable operation relies on increasing the methane yield from manure, and especially of its solid fraction which is not so easily degradable. In the present study, Aqueous Ammonia Soaking (AAS) in six different concentrations in ammonia (5%, 10%, 15%, 20%, 25% and 32%) and for 1, 3 and 5 days at 22°C was applied on digested fibers separated from the effluent of a manure-fed, full-scale anaerobic digester. A methane yield increase from 76% to 104% was achieved during the first series of experiments, while the difference in reagent concentration did not considerably affect the methane yield. It was shown that the optimal duration was three days for both 5 and 25 % w/w reagent concentrations in ammonia tested. Carbohydrates and phosphorus content remained unaffected, while a slight decrease in Klason lignin and non-soluble organic nitrogen content was observed after AAS. It is concluded that AAS is a very promising treatment resulting to an overall increase of the methane yield of digested manure fibers from 76 to 265% depending on the conditions and the batch of digested fibers used (an even higher increase of 190-265% was achieved during the 2nd series of experiments, where different AAS durations were tested, compared to the 1st series were different ammonia concentrations were applied).