Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology

, Volume 131, Issue 1–3, pp 887–896 | Cite as

Methane production in a 100-L upflow bioreactor by anaerobic digestion of farm waste

  • Abhijeet P. Borole
  • K. Thomas Klasson
  • Whitney Ridenour
  • Justin Holland
  • Khursheed Karim
  • Muthanna H. Al-Dahhan
Session 5 Microbial Catalysis and Metabolic Engineering


Manure waste from dairy farms has been used for methane production for decades, however, problems such as digester failure are routine. The problem has been investigated in small scale (1–2 L) digesters in the laboratory; however, very little scale-up to intermediate scales are available. We report production of methane in a 100-L digester and the results of an investigation into the effect of partial mixing induced by gas upflow/recirculation in the digester. The digester was operated for a period of about 70 d (with 16-d hydraulic retention time) with and without the mixing induced by gas recirculation through an internal draft tube. The results show a clear effect of mixing on digester operation. Without any mixing, the digester performance deteriorated within 30–50 d, whereas with mixing continuous production of methane was observed. This study demonstrates the importance of mixing and its critical role in design of large scale anaerobic digesters.

Index Entries

Anaerobic digestion animal manure gas recirculation mixing biogas 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abhijeet P. Borole
    • 1
  • K. Thomas Klasson
    • 2
  • Whitney Ridenour
    • 3
  • Justin Holland
    • 3
  • Khursheed Karim
    • 4
  • Muthanna H. Al-Dahhan
    • 4
  1. 1.Oak Ridge National LaboratoryOak Ridge
  2. 2.Southern Regional Research CenterUSDA-ARSNew Orleans
  3. 3.Oak Ridge Institute for Science and EducationORAUOak Ridge
  4. 4.Chemical Reaction Engineering Laboratory (CREL), Department of Chemical EngineeringWashington UniversitySt. Louis

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