Biogas from a full scale digester operated in psychrophilic conditions and fed only with fruit and vegetable waste

J. Martí-Herrero, G. Soria-Castellón, A. Diaz-de-Basurto, René Alvarez Apaza, D. Chemisana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


The aim of this work was to evaluate the feasibility of treating fruit and vegetable waste from a municipal market in a full-scale anaerobic digester with minimum implementation and operational costs, i.e. without pre-treatment, clean water consumption, active heating or mixing. For this purpose, a 13.9 m3 digester that forces the submersion of solids, gains heat through solar radiation and recirculates effluent was monitored during one year of real operational and weather conditions in Bolivia. The digester was initially loaded with cow rumen (inoculum source), and after eight weeks with only fruit and vegetable waste. The digester operated at an organic loading rate (OLR) of 1 kgVS/(m3d). The normalized specific biogas production averaged 0.26 m3/kgVS and increased to 0.34 m3/kgVS when OLR was halved to 0.57 kgVS/(m3d), while the passive solar design allowed an average digester temperature of 21 °C (4 °C above the average ambient temperature).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)676-684
Number of pages9
JournalRenewable Energy
StatePublished - Apr 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Financial support to carry out this research was provided by Hivos , Cooperation Project O031-2010 supported by the Centre for Development Cooperation (CCD) of the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC) and the Office of Cooperation and Development of the University of Lleida (UdL) . The authors would like to thank the Tiquipaya Municipality (Bolivia). Jaime Martí-Herrero thanks the Prometeo Project of the Secretariat for Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation of the Republic of Ecuador that funded part of his work and also the financial support of CIMNE via the CERCA Programme/Generalitat de Catalunya. Aitor Diaz de Basurto thanks Ivet Ferrer Martí. The authors wish to acknowledge the revision of the document by Samay Schütt, Samuel Schlesinger and Sergi Astals.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd


  • Anaerobic digestion
  • Biogas
  • Biowaste
  • Fruit and vegetable waste
  • Low cost digester
  • MSW


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