Use of Inoculum, Water and Percolate as Strategy to Avoid Inhibition on Dry‑Batch Anaerobic Digestion of Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste


The impact of inoculum to substrate ratio (I:S) and the addition of water and percolate on stopping inhibition in dry batch anaerobic digestion of organic fraction municipal solid waste (OFMSW) was investigated. In particular, ratios of I:S from 1:2 to 1:16 and total solid contents from 40 to 25% with water and percolate addition were analysed. Tested I:S did not avoid acidification of the anaerobic digesters (ADs), and the highest biogas and methane production (16.2 and 1.7 L/kg VSadded, respectively) was achieved with the 1:4 ratio. Water addition was also insufficient to avoid acidification, and while biogas increased as TS decreased, 40.9 L/kg VSadded for 25% TS, methane yield remained low at 1.2 L/kg VSadded due to the inhibition of methanogenic archaea. Percolate addition proved a suitable strategy to increase pH buffering, with an increased methane production of 199.4 L/kg VSadded at similar TS ranges (27%). Impact on kinetics of methane formation was assessed by kinetic modelling with logistic model identified as the better fit for most of the ADs. Shorter lag phases were observed as TS were reduced, regardless of the acidification, as mass transfer limitations were reduced at the beginning of the batch, but an increase was observed when percolate was used instead of water. Increases of the maximum methane rate (Rmax) was also achieved with TS reduction, but only when acidification was avoided. This study has highlighted the need to profile percolate composition during batch digestion in order to balance recirculation of nutrients, microbial communities and toxic compounds.


open access article


Acidification, Inhibition, Buffering effect, Kinetic modelling


Rocamora, I., Wagland, S.T., Villa, R., Simpson, E.W., Fernandez, O., Bajon-Fernandez, Y. (2021) Use of Inoculum, Water and Percolate as Strategy to Avoid Inhibition on Dry-Batch Anaerobic Digestion of Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste. Waste and Biomass Valorization,


Research Institute

Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development (IESD)