Composting of wastewater treatment sludge with different bulking agents


UÇAROĞLU S. , ALKAN U.

JOURNAL OF THE AIR & WASTE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION, vol.66, no.3, pp.288-295, 2016 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 66 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/10962247.2015.1131205
  • Title of Journal : JOURNAL OF THE AIR & WASTE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION
  • Page Numbers: pp.288-295

Abstract

The main objectives of this study were to investigate the compostability of wastewater treatment sludge (WTS) containing different bulking agents (BAs) and to determine the most efficient BA. Four different compost trials consisting of mixtures of wheat straw (WS), plane leaf (PL), corncob (CC) and sunflower stalk (SS) with WTS were performed in laboratory reactors. In all experiments, a mixture of 60% WTS and 40% BA (wet basis) was used. The temperature, dry matter (DM), organic matter (OM), pH, electrical conductivity (EC) and C/N ratio were monitored during the composting process. Evaluation of the operational parameters showed that the highest organic matter degradation (i.e. 37.6%), loss of dry matter (i.e. 29.6%) and temperature (i.e. 64 degrees C) were achieved for the WTS-CC mixtures. Results also showed that the WTS-SS mixture was also successful in terms of these operational parameters. Use of bulking agents for the treatment of wastewater treatment sludge in composting process is an important issue with regards to process efficiency, economy and disposal of agricultural waste. Corncob and sunflower stalk that were previously not used for the composting of WTS from food industry were shown to be highly successful BA materials in this study.Implications: The compostability of wastewater treatment sludge from the food industry with different bulking agents was studied. Wheat straw, plane leaf, corncob, and sunflower stalk were used as bulking agents. The required microbial stabilization and degree of mineralization were achieved with corncobs and sunflower stalks.