The objective of the present study is to analyse kinetic and stoichiometric parameter values of gelatine anaerobic degradation at thermophilic range, based on an experiment designed to elucidate if volatile fatty acids (VFA) are inhibitors of the hydrolysis process. Results showed that VFA are not inhibiting the hydrolysis process. The ADM1 model adequately expressed the consecutive steps of hydrolysis and acidogenesis, with estimated kinetic values corresponding to a fast acidogenesis and slower hydrolysis. The hydrolysis was found to be the rate limiting step of anaerobic degradation. Estimation of yield coefficients based on the relative initial slopes of VFA profiles obtained in a simple batch experiment produced satisfactory results. From the identification study, it was concluded that it is possible to determine univocally the related kinetic parameter values for protein degradation if the evolution of amino acids is measured in simultaneous batch experiments, with different initial protein and amino acids concentrations.
Water Science and Technology, 2006, Vol 54, Issue 4, p. 31-39