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Bioresource Technology
Vol. 248, 2018, Pages: 187-193

Ethanol prefermentation of food waste in sequencing batch methane fermentation for improved buffering capacity and microbial community analysis

Miao Yu, Chuanfu Wu, Qunhui Wang, Xiaohong Sun, Yuanyuan Rena, Yu-You Li

Department of Environmental Engineering, Beijing Key Laboratory of Resource-oriented Treatment of Industrial Pollutants, University of Science and Technology Beijing, 30 Xueyuan Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China.


This study investigates the effects of ethanol prefermentation (EP) on methane fermentation. Yeast was added to the substrate for EP in the sequencing batch methane fermentation of food waste. An Illumina MiSeq high-throughput sequencing system was used to analyze changes in the microbial community. Methane production in the EP group (254 mL/g VS) was higher than in the control group (35 mL/g VS) because EP not only increased the buffering capacity of the system, but also increased hydrolytic acidification. More carbon source was converted to ethanol in the EP group than in the control group, and neutral ethanol could be converted continuously to acetic acid, which promoted the growth of Methanobacterium and Methanosarcina. As a result, the relative abundance of methane-producing bacteria was significantly higher than that of the control group. Kinetic modeling indicated that the EP group had a higher hydrolysis efficiency and shorter lag phase.

Keywords: Food waste, Methane fermentation, Ethanol prefermentation, Microbial community, High-throughput sequencing.

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