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A hot chance: exhaustive anaerobic digestion of “grey waste” under temperatures of pasteurization

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According to German laws municipal residual refuse MRR (biowaste, paper and glass are collected in separate bins) must be nearly mineralized before it will be deposited in a landfill, since this material can still contain 20 - 50 % biogenous organic matter leading to gaseous and liquid emissions. Especially the high-organic sieve fraction of MRR below 40 - 60 mm and with a thermal energy content of 5000 kJ/ kg would be unfavourably or not admissible for thermal utilizations.

Lab-scale experiments with household-organics and manure, revealed that methanogenesis should also be possible at hyperthermophilic conditions above 55°C (e.g. 70°C; Ahring, 1994). However, Lepistö and Rintala (1996) found by their experiments with wastewater that the necessary “propionate removal was significant only at 55°C”. The following experiments will show that the hydrolysis stage should be performed above 55°C and not the methanogenic stage.

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