Abstract by Ryan Rutter
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Anaerobic Digestion: From Lab to Pilot Scale
Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a biological process that has vast potential to reduce waste volumes and produce functional fuel sources. Methane gas yield from the anaerobic digestion of biowaste is enhanced by pretreating the waste. Lab-scale experimentation is being conducted to further investigate anaerobic digestion and pretreatment processes. Experimentation on a larger scale is desirable to better model industry-scale applications, increase the efficacy of semi-batch operation, and to gain further insight into the process.
Recently, facilities on farmland owned by BYU were made available to AD researchers. The necessary equipment needed to conduct pretreatment and anaerobic digestion on an industry-scale were transported and installed. Researchers are in the process of starting up the pilot-scale operation and translating lab-scale experimental designs to a much larger scale.