Startup and stability of thermophilic anaerobic digestion of OFMSW

Mutasem E. El-Fadel, Pascal Saikaly, Sophia A. Ghanimeh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Anaerobic digestion (AD) of the organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW) is promoted as an energy source and more recently as a greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation measure. In this context, AD systems operating at thermophilic temperatures (55-60°C)-compared to mesophilic temperatures (35-40°C)-have the unique feature of producing hygienic soil conditioners with greater process efficiency, higher energy yield, and more GHG savings. Startup of AD systems is often constrained by the lack of acclimated seeds, leading to process instability and failure. The authors focus on strategies to startup thermophilic digesters treating OFMSW in the absence of acclimated seeds and examines constraints associated with process stability and ways to overcome them. Relevant gaps in the literature and future research needs are delineated. © 2013 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2685-2721
Number of pages37
JournalCritical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology
Issue number24
StatePublished - Jan 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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