Biogas and methane yield in response to co-and separate digestion of biomass wastes

Laetitia Adelard*, Tjalfe G. Poulsen, Volana Rakotoniaina

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


The impact of co-digestion as opposed to separate digestion, on biogas and methane yield (apparent synergetic effects) was investigated for three biomass materials (pig manure, cow manure and food waste) under mesophilic conditions over a 36 day period. In addition to the three biomass materials (digested separately), 13 biomass mixtures (co-digested) were used. Two approaches for modelling biogas and methane yield during co-digestion, based on volatile solids concentration and ultimate gas and methane potentials, wereevaluated. The dependency of apparent synergetic effects on digestion time and biomass mixture composition was further assessed using measured cumulative biogas and methane yields and specific biogas and methane generation rates. Results indicated that it is possible, based on known volatile solids concentration and ultimate biogas or methane yields for a set of biomass materials digested separately, to accurately estimate gas yields for biomass mixtures made from these materials using calibrated models. For the biomass materials considered here, modelling indicated that the addition of pig manure is the main cause of synergetic effects. Co-digestion generally resulted in improved ultimate biogas and methane yields compared to separate digestion. Biogas and methane production was furthermore significantly higher early (0-7 days) and to some degree also late (above 20 days) in the digestion process during co-digestion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalWaste Management and Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


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