How can we improve biomethane production per unit of feedstock in biogas plants?

Zaki ul Zaman Asam, Tjalfe Gorm Poulsen, Abdul Sattar Nizami, Rashad Rafique, Ger Kiely, Jerry D. Murphy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

130 Scopus citations


Biogas production is one of the number of tools that may be used to alleviate the problems of global warming, energy security and waste management. Biogas plants can be difficult to sustain from a financial perspective. The facilities must be financially optimized through use of substrates with high biogas potential, low water content and low retention requirement. This research carried out in laboratory scale batch digesters assessed the biogas potential of energy crops (maize and grass silage) and solid manure fractions from manure separation units. The ultimate methane productivity in terms of volatile solids (VS) was determined as 330, 161, 230, 236, 361. L/kg VS from raw pig slurry, filter pressed manure fiber (FPMF), chemically precipitated manure fiber (CPMF), maize silage and grass silage respectively. Methane productivity based on mass (L/kg substrate) was significantly higher in FPMF (55. L/kg substrate), maize silage (68. L/kg substrate) and grass silage (45-124. L/kg substrate (depending on dry solids of feedstock)) as in comparison to raw pig slurry (10. L/kg substrate). The use of these materials as co-substrates with raw pig slurry will increase significantly the biomethane yield per unit feedstock in the biogas plant.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2013-2018
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Energy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Biogas
  • Grass
  • Maize
  • Manure
  • Methane
  • Pig slurry

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