Laboratory-scale membrane up-concentration and co-anaerobic digestion for energy recovery from sewage and kitchen waste

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

This study assessed an alternative concept for co-treatment of sewage and organic kitchen waste in Vietnam. The goal was to apply direct membrane filtration for sewage treatment to generate a permeate that is suitable for discharge. The obtained chemical oxygen demand (COD) concentrations in the permeate of ultrafiltration tests were indeed under the limit value (50 mg/L) of the local municipal discharge standards. The COD of the concentrate was 5.4 times higher than that of the initial feed. These concentrated organics were then co-digested with organic kitchen wastes at an organic loading rate of 2.0 kg VS/m3.d. The volumetric biogas production of the digester was 1.94 ± 0.34 m3/m3.d. The recovered carbon, in terms of methane gas, accounted for 50% of the total carbon input of the integrated system. Consequently, an electrical production of 64 Wh/capita/d can be obtained when applying the proposed technology with the current wastes generated in Ho Chi Minh City. Thus, it is an approach with great potential in terms of energy recovery and waste treatment.

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