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Methane Production from the Soluble Fraction of Distillers' Dried Grains with Solubles in Anaerobic Sequencing Batch Reactors

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Methane production from the soluble fraction of distillers' dried grains with solubles, a co-product of ethanol production, was studied in 2-L anaerobic sequencing batch reactors (ASBRs) under 10 different operating conditions. Methane production and chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal were quantified for a wide range of operating parameters. Chemical oxygen demand removals of 64 to 95% were achieved at organic loading rates ranging from 1.5 to 22.2 g COD/L · d, solids retention times from 8 to 40 days, and food-to-microorganism ratios ranging from 0.4 to 1.9 g COD/g volatile suspended solids (VSS) · d. Biogas methane content varied from 61 to 74%, with 0.29 L CH 4 produced/g COD removed. Roughly 56% of the influent COD and 84% of the COD removed in the ASBRs was converted to methane. Microbial yield ( Y) and decay ( b) constants were determined to be Y = 0.126 g VSS/g COD removed and b = 0.032 day −1, respectively. Methane produced from co-products can reduce the costs and fossil-fuel consumption of ethanol manufacture.

Keywords: anaerobic; anaerobic sequencing batch reactor; biogas; distillers' dried grains with solubles; ethanol; methane

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 2008

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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