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COD/sulfate ratio does not affect the methane yield and microbial diversity in anaerobic digesters

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Jan DolfingORCiD, Ozge Eyice



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


© 2019 Elsevier Ltd Anaerobic digestion of organic matter is the major route of biomethane production. However, in the presence of sulfate, sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) typically outcompete methanogens, which may reduce or even preclude methane production from sulfate-containing wastewaters. Although sulfate-reduction and methanogenesis can occur simultaneously, our limited understanding of the microbiology of anaerobic digesters treating sulfate-containing wastewaters constrains improvements in the production of methane from these systems. This study tested the effects of carbon sources and chemical oxygen demand-to-sulfate ratio (COD/SO 4 2− ) on the diversity and interactions of SRB and methanogens in an anaerobic digester treating a high-sulfate waste stream. Overall, the data showed that sulfate removal and methane generation occurred in varying efficiencies and the carbon source had limited effect on the methane yield. Importantly, the results demonstrated that methanogenic and SRB diversities were only affected by the carbon source and not by the COD/SO 4 2− ratio.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Cetecioglu Z, Dolfing J, Taylor J, Purdy KJ, Eyice O

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Water Research

Year: 2019

Volume: 155

Pages: 444-454

Print publication date: 15/05/2019

Online publication date: 04/03/2019

Acceptance date: 21/02/2019

Date deposited: 02/05/2019

ISSN (print): 0043-1354

ISSN (electronic): 1879-2448

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2019.02.038


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