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Treated Biosolids in a Hot Hydrogen Environment

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Title: Treated Biosolids in a Hot Hydrogen Environment
Author: Pinder, Richard
Department: School of Engineering
Program: Engineering
Advisor: Zytner, Richard
Abstract: A laboratory scale Gas Phased Reduction (GPR) Process unit was designed, fabricated, built and tested to prove that the GPR process was capable of treating biosolids and producing energy. Two different types of biosolids were treated; digested sludge (Cake) and waste activated sludge (WAS). In addition to the biosolids test program, a sample of organic solid food waste was tested; a brand name hamburger. The GPR process converts all of the organic matter in the biosolids and organic solid food waste into hydrogen-enriched methane gas, converting the residue into biologically inert material that has soil-like properties allowing for easy disposal. The process destroys pathogens, does not produce odors, enables recovery of valuable inorganic materials and reduces the requirements for land filling. More importantly, the ability to apply the process to both dried sludge cake or digested sludge taken directly from the digesters, even waste activated sludge, provides many opportunities to make wastewater treatment plants more efficient. In addition, the GPR process does not create tar, an undesirable by-product of some other treatment technologies. Overall, the GPR process can achieve a mass solids reduction of approximately 53% and in the process generate 0.4 L CH4/g of sludgedwb. This methane is a high energy fuel that can be used to make wastewater treatment plants energy self-sufficient by producing electricity on-site.
Date: 2012-09
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