Inderscience Publishers

Optimum organic loading rate for semi-continuous operation of an anaerobic process for biogas production from Jatropha curcas seed cake

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This paper reports on biogas production by anaerobic digestion of Jatropha curcas seed cake in semi continuous flow at 30°C, focusing on increasing the organic loading rate (OLR) of seed cake by investigating levels of 1.25, 1.67, 2.5, 3.33 and 5 kg Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD)/m³ day. Reactors were fed at flow rates of 125, 167, 250, 333 and 500 ml/day, yielding Hydraulic Retention Times (HRTs) of 40, 30, 20, 15 and 10 days. Increasing the OLR decreases the organic digestion. The highest methane yield (340 l at STP/kg COD degraded) was obtained at the OLR of 1.25 kg COD/m³ day.

Keywords: agricultural waste, anaerobic digestion, biogas, greenhouse gases, global warming, Jatropha curcas seed cake, methane, organic loading rate

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