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Evaluation of the controlled hydrodynamic cavitation as gas mass transfer system for ex-situ biological hydrogen methanation

TitleEvaluation of the controlled hydrodynamic cavitation as gas mass transfer system for ex-situ biological hydrogen methanation
Publication TypeArticolo su Rivista peer-reviewed
Year of Publication2023
AuthorsGiuliano, Antonio, Cellamare C.M., Chiarini L., Tabacchioni Silvia, and Petta Luigi
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Keywordsarchaeon, Biomethane, Bioreactors, Bubble columns, Cavitation, Controled hydrodynamic cavitation, Efficiency, Ex situ, Ex-situ biological methanation, Gas-liquid mass transfer, Gases, Hydrodynamic cavitations, hydrodynamics, Hydrogenation, Hydrogenotrophic archeon, Long-term effects, Mass transfer, Methanation, Microorganisms, Transfer systems

The present work represents the first study focused on controlled hydrodynamic cavitation applied as gas transfer system to supply the methanogenic archaea with exogenous H2 and CO2. Starting from a generic mixed inoculum sampled from a thermophilic full-scale anaerobic digester, a bubble column bioreactor was coupled with a rotating hydrodynamic cavitator and fed with different H2/CO2 loading rates. Process efficiency and long-term effects on process stability and microbial population were evaluated. Gas sparging through the controlled hydrodynamic cavitation device is feasible under the operating conditions tested, resulting in almost 100% efficiency in H2 utilization and recording a CH4 volumetric content more than 99% in the gas leaving the reactor, without any gas recirculation from the headspace. The experimental trials lasted about 160 days and the behavior of the bioreactor showed a substantial stability over the time. Metagenomic and FISH analyses were carried out at the end of the experimental trials, revealing a remarkable increase of hydrogenotrophic methanogens species, related to the selection-effect of H2 on community composition. The findings provide previously unidentified insights into long-term effect on process stability and microbial community diversity in the biological hydrogenotrophic methanation process coupled with a gas–liquid mass transfer system based on controlled hydrodynamic cavitation technology. © 2023 Elsevier B.V.


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Citation KeyGiuliano2023