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Abstract

Improving the effects of hydrolysis on waste activated sludge (WAS) prior to anaerobic digestion is of primary importance. Several technologies have been developed and partially implemented in practice. In this paper, perhaps the simplest of these methods, alkaline solubilization, has been investigated and the results of hydrolysis are presented. An increase to only pH 8 can distinctively increase the soluble chemical oxygen demand (SCOD), and produce an anaerobic condition effect favorable to volatile fatty acids (VFA) production. Further increases of pH, up to pH 10, leads to further improvements in hydrolysis effects. It is suggested that an increase to pH 9 is sufficient and feasible for technical operations, given the use of moderate anti-corrosive construction material. This recommendation is also made having taken in consideration the option of using hydrodynamic disintegration after the initial WAS hydrolysis process. This paper presents the effects of following alkaline solubilization with hydrodynamic disintegration on SCOD
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Abstract

In this study, β-galactosidase enzyme from Kluyveromyces fragilis was immobilised on a commercial polyethersulfone membrane surface, 10 kDa cut-off. An integrated process, concerning the simultaneous hydrolysis-ultrafiltration of whey lactose was studied and working conditions have been fixed at 55°C and pH 6.9, the same conditions that are used for the industrial process of protein concentration. For the immobilisation, best results were obtained using 5% (v/v) of glutaraldehyde solution and 0.03 M galactose; the total activity recovery coefficient (TARC) was 44.2%. The amount of immobilised enzyme was 12.49 mg with a total activity of 86.3 LAU at 37°C, using 5% (w/v) lactose solution in phosphate buffer (100 mM pH 6.9). The stability of the immobilised enzyme was approximately 585 fold higher in comparison with the stability of free enzyme. Multipoint covalent immobilisation improves the stability of the enzyme, thereby enhancing the decision to use the membrane as a filtering element and support for the enzyme immobilisation.
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Abstract

The presented results of research on the effectiveness of enzymatic hydrolysis of lignocellulosic waste, depending on their initial depolymerisation in alkaline medium were considered in the context of the possibility of their further use in the fermentation media focused on the recovery of energy in the form of molecular hydrogen. The aim of this study was to determine the appropriate dose and concentration of a chemical reagent, whose efficiency would be high enough to cause decomposition of the complex, but without an excessive production of by-products which could adversely affect the progress and effectiveness of the enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation. The effect of treatment on physical-chemical changes of homogenates’ properties such as pH, COD, the concentration of monosaccharide and total sugars and the concentration of total suspended solids and volatile suspended solids was determined. The enzymatic decomposition of lignocellulosic complex was repeatedly more efficient if the sample homogenates were subjected to an initial exposure to NaOH. The degree of conversion of complex sugars into simple sugars during enzymatic hydrolysis of homogenates pre-alkalized to pH 11.5 and 12.0 was 83.3 and 84.2% respectively, which should be sufficient for efficient hydrogen fermentation process.
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Abstract

The factor which essentially affects sludge biodegradation rate is the degree of fluidization of insoluble organic polymers to the solved form, which is a precondition for availability of nutrients for microorganisms. The phases which substantially limit the rate of anaerobic decomposition include hydrolytic and methanogenic phase. Subjecting excess sludge to the process of initial disintegration substantially affects the effectiveness of the process of anaerobic stabilization. As a result of intensification of the process of hydrolysis, which manifests itself in the increase in the value and rate of generating volatile fatty acids (VFA), elongation of methanogenic phase of the process and increase in the degree of fermentation of modified sludge can be observed. Use of initial treatment of sewage sludge i.e. thermal disintegration is aimed at breaking microorganisms' cells and release of intracellular organic matter to the liquid phase. As a result of thermal hydrolysis in the sludge, the volatile fatty acids (VFA) are generated as early as at the stage of the process of conditioning. The obtained value of VFA determines the course of biological hydrolysis which is the first phase of anaerobic stabilization. The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of thermal disintegration of excess sludge on the effectiveness of the process of hydrolysis in anaerobic stabilization i.e. the rate of production of volatile fatty acids, changes in the level of chemical oxygen demand (COD) and increase in the degree of reduction in organic matter. During the first stage of the investigations, the most favourable conditions of thermal disintegration of excess sludge were identified using the temperatures of 50°C, 70°C, 90°C and heating times of 1.5 h - 6 h. The sludge was placed in laboratory flasks secured with a glass plug with liquid-column gauge and subjected to thermal treatment in water bath with shaker option. Another stage involved 8-day process of anaerobic stabilization of raw and thermally disintegrated excess sludge. Stabilization was carried out in mesophilic temperature regime i.e. at 37°C, under periodical conditions. In the case of the process of anaerobic stabilization of thermally disintegrated excess sludge at the temperature of 50°C and heating time of 6 h (mixture B) and 70°C and heating time of 4.5% (mixture C), the degree of fermentation of 30.67% and 33.63%, respectively, was obtained. For the studied sludge, i.e. mixture B and mixture C, maximal level of volatile fatty acids i.e. 874.29 mg CH3COOH/dm3 and 1131.43 mg CH3COOH/dm3 was found on the 2nd day of the process. The maximal obtained value of VFA was correlated on this day with maximal COD level, which was 1344 mg O2/dm3 for mixture B and 1778 mg O2/dm3 for mixture C.
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