Thermophilic (55 - 65°C) and extreme thermophilic (70 - 80°C) sulfate reduction in methanol and formate-fed UASB reactors

M.V.G. Vallero, E. Camarero, G. Lettinga, P.N.L. Lens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The feasibility of thermophilic (55-65 degreesC) and extreme thermophilic (70-80 degreesC) sulfate-reducing processes was investigated in three lab-scale upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactors fed with either methanol or formate as the sole substrates and inoculated with mesophilic granular sludge previously not exposed to high temperatures
The feasibility of thermophilic (55-65 degreesC) and extreme thermophilic (70-80 degreesC) sulfate-reducing processes was investigated in three lab-scale upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactors fed with either methanol or formate as the sole substrates and inoculated with mesophilic granular sludge previously not exposed to high temperatures. Full methanol and formate degradation at temperatures up to, respectively, 70 and 75 degreesC, were achieved when operating UASB reactors fed with sulfate rich (COD/SO42- = 0.5) synthetic wastewater. Methane-producing archaea (MPA) outcompeted sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) in the formate-fed UASB reactor at all temperatures tested (65-75 degreesC). In contrast, SRB outcompeted MPA in methanol-fed UASB reactors at temperatures equal to or exceeding 65 degreesC, whereas strong competition between SRB and MPA was observed in these reactors at 55 degreesC. A short-term (5 days) temperature increase from 55 to 65 degreesC was an effective strategy to suppress methanogenesis in methanol-fed sulfidogenic UASB reactors operated at 55 degreesC. Methanol was found to be a suitable electron donor for sulfate-reducing processes at a maximal temperature of 70 degreesC, with sulfide as the sole mineralization product of methanol degradation at that temperature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1382-1392
JournalBiotechnology Progress
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • anaerobic treatment
  • waste water treatment
  • methanol
  • reduction
  • sulfates
  • temperature
  • rate anaerobic reactor
  • volatile fatty-acids
  • 55-degrees-c
  • sludge
  • degradation
  • conversion
  • bacterium
  • methanogenesis
  • competition
  • performance

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