Improving the biogas production performance of municipal waste activated sludge via disperser induced microwave disintegration.
Excess sludge disintegration by energy intensive processes like mechanical pretreatment is considered to be high in cost. In this study, an attempt has been made to disintegrate excess sludge by disperser in a cost effective manner by deflocculating the sludge using sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) at a concentration of 0.04 g/g SS. The disperser pretreatment was effective at a specific energy input of 5013 kJ/kg TS where deflocculated sludge showed higher chemical oxygen demand solubilisation and suspended solids reduction of 26% and 22.9% than flocculated sludge and was found to be 18.8% and 18.6% for former and latter respectively. Higher accumulation of volatile fatty acid (700 mg/L) in deflocculated sludge indicates better hydrolysis of sludge by proposed method. The anaerobic biodegradability resulted in higher biogas production potential of 0.522 L/(g VS) for deflocculated sludge. Cost analysis of the study showed 43% net energy saving in deflocculated sludge.