Special Issue "Anaerobic Processes, Monitoring and Intelligence Control"

A special issue of Processes (ISSN 2227-9717). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental and Green Processes".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 November 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Young-Chae Song
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Environmental Engineering, Korea Maritime and Ocean University, 727, Taejong-ro, Yeongdo-gu, Busan 49112, South Korea
Interests: anaerobic processes; environmental sensors; real-time monitoring, intelligence control, bioelectrochemical technology
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Prof. Dr. Chaeyoung Lee
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Civil, Environmental and Energy Engineering, University of Suwon, 17, Wauan-gil. Bongdam-eup, Hwaseong, Gyeonggi 18323, South Korea
Interests: Anaerobic hydrogen/methane fermentation; sludge disintegration; intelligence control; energy/resources recovery
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Prof. Dr. Yongtae Ahn
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Energy Engineering, Gyeongnam National University of Science and Technology, Dongjin-ro 33, Jinju, Gyeongnam 52725, Korea
Interests: bioelectrochemical anaerobic digestion; membrane filtration; energy/resources recovery from organic wastes
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Anaerobic digestion (AD) is an environmentally friendly technology with great potential in the field of stabilizing organic wastes and producing methane or hydrogen. In AD, the decomposition of organic matter is the result of complex interactions of physicochemical and biochemical reactions, and it is difficult to predict the response of anaerobic processes to changes in environmental conditions. Therefore, the anaerobic process has still some technical limitations, such as being susceptible to environmental changes and challenging to operate. Until now, anaerobic processes have been widely applied to various organic wastes such as food waste, sewage sludge, agricultural and livestock waste, and industrial wastewater. Nevertheless, it has been difficult to fully expand the applicability of AD due to its intrinsic limitations. Recently, studies that can overcome the limitations of AD by combining the anaerobic decomposition process with bioelectrochemical technology and monitoring and controlling the state variables of the anaerobic process using various sensors and artificial intelligence are being conducted by many researchers. This Special Issue targets, but is not limited to, interesting recently advanced topics related to anaerobic processes, such as the following:

  • Microbiology of AD
  • Sensors of anaerobic processes
  • Realtime monitoring of anaerobic processes
  • Intelligence control of anaerobic processes
  • Biogas upgrading (methane, hydrogen)
  • Digestate polishing and N, P recovery
  • Bioelectrochemical systems
  • Direct interspecies electron transfer
  • Anaerobic processes for wastewater treatment
  • New applications of anaerobic processes

Prof. Dr. Young-Chae Song
Prof. Dr. Chaeyoung Lee
Prof. Dr. Yongtae Ahn
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Processes is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Anaerobic digestion
  • Biogas (methane, hydrogen)
  • Organic wastes
  • Sensors
  • Monitoring
  • Intelligence control
  • Bioelectrochemical systems
  • Direct interspecies electron transfer
  • Biogas upgrading
  • Digestate

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
Simulation and Optimisation of Integrated Anaerobic-Aerobic Bioreactor (IAAB) for the Treatment of Palm Oil Mill Effluent
Processes 2021, 9(7), 1124; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pr9071124 - 28 Jun 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 663
Abstract
This study highlights an innovative piece of hybrid technology, whereby the combination of anaerobic and aerobic processes into a single reactor, namely, the integrated anaerobic–aerobic bioreactor (IAAB) can surpass the limits of conventional methods treating palm oil mill effluent (POME). Optimisation of IAAB [...] Read more.
This study highlights an innovative piece of hybrid technology, whereby the combination of anaerobic and aerobic processes into a single reactor, namely, the integrated anaerobic–aerobic bioreactor (IAAB) can surpass the limits of conventional methods treating palm oil mill effluent (POME). Optimisation of IAAB using SuperPro Designer V9 simulator for maximum biogas yield while addressing its economic and environmental trade-offs was conducted for the first time. Parameters such as hydraulic retention time (HRT) and organic loading rate (OLR) were optimised in the anaerobic compartment from 10 days and 6.2 g COD/L day to 9 days and 6.9 g COD/L day, respectively. Furthermore, sludge recycle ratio was optimised from 20% to 50% in the aerobic compartment. The optimisation was successful where the biogas yield increased from 0.24 to 0.29 L CH4/g CODremoved with excellent Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD), and Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) removal efficiencies up to 99% with 5.8% lower net expenditure. This simulation results were comparable against the pre-commercialized IAAB with 11.4% increase in methane yield after optimisation. Economic analysis had proven the optimised process to be feasible, resulting in return on investment (ROI), payback time, and internal rate of return (IRR) of 24.5%, 4.1 years, and 17.9%, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anaerobic Processes, Monitoring and Intelligence Control)
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Article
Indirect Monitoring of Anaerobic Digestion for Cheese Whey Treatment
Processes 2021, 9(3), 539; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pr9030539 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 535
Abstract
Efficient monitoring is an open problem in the operation of anaerobic digestion processes, due to the lack of accurate, low-cost, and proper sensors for the on-line monitoring of key process variables. This paper presents two approaches for the indirect monitoring of the anaerobic [...] Read more.
Efficient monitoring is an open problem in the operation of anaerobic digestion processes, due to the lack of accurate, low-cost, and proper sensors for the on-line monitoring of key process variables. This paper presents two approaches for the indirect monitoring of the anaerobic digestion of cheese whey wastewater. First, the observability property is addressed using conventional and nonconventional techniques, including an observability index. Then, two model-based observer techniques, an extended Luenberger observer, a sliding mode observer, and a data-driven technique based on fractal analysis are formulated and discussed. The performance and capabilities of the proposed methodologies are illustrated on a validated model with experimental data of the anaerobic digestion of cheese whey. Experimental pH measurements are used for the data-driven approach based on fractal analysis. The experimental data sets correspond to experimental conditions (pH > 7.5 and temperature (T) = 40 °C) favoring volatile fatty acid (VFA) production (30 g/L) with simultaneously acceptable biogas production (3420 mL). Results also show that the proposed observers were able to predict satisfactory key process variables. On the other hand, the fractal analysis provides reliable qualitative trends of VFA production and chemical oxygen demand (COD) consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anaerobic Processes, Monitoring and Intelligence Control)
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Article
Effect of Biochar Prepared from Food Waste through Different Thermal Treatment Processes on Crop Growth
Processes 2021, 9(2), 276; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pr9020276 - 01 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 560
Abstract
Biochar is generally accepted and increasingly valued in scientific circles as solid products in the thermochemical conversion of biomass, mainly because of its rich carbon content. The purpose of this research is to investigate the impact of biochar from different sources on wheat [...] Read more.
Biochar is generally accepted and increasingly valued in scientific circles as solid products in the thermochemical conversion of biomass, mainly because of its rich carbon content. The purpose of this research is to investigate the impact of biochar from different sources on wheat growth. In particular, this work focused on the effect of different preparation methods and raw material of biochar on the growth of wheat and aim to find a potential soil substitute that can be used for crop cultivation. Two synthetic methods were evaluated: hydrothermal conversion and pyrolysis. The characterization of biochar was determined to explore the impact of its microstructure on wheat growth. The results show that the yield of biochar produced from high-pressure reactor is significantly higher than that obtained by using microwave reactor. For example, the biochar yield obtained through the former is about six times that of the latter when using steamed bread cooked as biomass raw material. In addition, the growth trend of wheat indicates that biochar has different promoting effects on the growth of wheat in its weight and height. The pyrolyzed carbon is more suitable for wheat growth and is even more effective than soil, indicating that pyrolyzed biochar has more potential to be an alternative soil in the future. Moreover, this research tries to explore the reasons that affect crop growth by characterizing biochar (including scanning electron microscopy (SEM), biofilm electrostatic test (BET) and Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR)). The results indicate that the biochar containing more pits and less hydroxyl functional are more suitable for storing moisture, which is one of the significant factors in the growth of crops. This study provides evidence of the effects of biochar on crop growth, both in terms of microstructure and macroscopic growth trends, which provides significant benefits for biochar to grow crops or plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anaerobic Processes, Monitoring and Intelligence Control)
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Review

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Review
Integration of Artificial Intelligence into Biogas Plant Operation
Processes 2021, 9(1), 85; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pr9010085 - 02 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1249
Abstract
In the biogas plants, organic material is converted to biogas under anaerobic conditions through physical and biochemical processes. From supply of the raw material to the arrival of the products to customers, there are serial processes which should be sufficiently monitored for optimizing [...] Read more.
In the biogas plants, organic material is converted to biogas under anaerobic conditions through physical and biochemical processes. From supply of the raw material to the arrival of the products to customers, there are serial processes which should be sufficiently monitored for optimizing the efficiency of the whole process. In particular, the anaerobic digestion process, which consists of sequential complex biological reactions, requires improved monitoring to prevent inhibition. Conventional implemented methods at the biogas plants are not adequate for monitoring the operational parameters and finding the correlation between them. As Artificial Intelligence has been integrated in different areas of life, the integration of it into the biogas production process will be inevitable for the future of the biogas plant operation. This review paper first examines the need for monitoring at the biogas plants with giving details about the process and process monitoring as well. In the following sections, the current situation of implementations of Artificial Intelligence in the biogas plant operation and in the similar industries will be represented. Moreover, considering that all the information gathered from literature and operational needs, an implementation model will be presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Anaerobic Processes, Monitoring and Intelligence Control)
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