80% (El Shinnawi et al., 1989; Somayaji and Khanna,1994). Babu et al. (1994) observed improvement inbiomethanation of mango processing wastes by severalfolds by the addition of extracts of seeds of Nirmali,common bean, black gram, guar and guargum at therate of 1500 ppm. Mixture of
andcowdung (1:1) gave a biogas yield of 0.62 m
15 days) (Zennaki et al., 1998).Recently Sharma (2002) observed an increase of 40–80%in biogas production on addition of 1% onion storagewaste (OSW) to cattle dung in a 400-l ﬂoating drumbiogas reactor.
3.1.2. Microbial strains
Strains of some bacteria and fungi have also beenfound to enhance gas production by stimulating theactivity of particular enzymes. Cellulolytic strains of bacteria like actinomycetes and mixed consortia havebeen found to improve biogas production in the range of 8.4–44% from cattle dung (Tirumale and Nand, 1994;Attar et al., 1998). All the strains exhibited a range of activity of all the enzymes involved in cellulose degra-dation, viz.
enzyme, exglucanase, endoglucanase,
-glucosidase. It seemed that endoglucanase activity wasof central importance for the hydrolysis of cellulose.Geeta et al. (1994) found that sugarcane bagasse pre-treated with
for 3 weeksunder ambient temperature conditions produced highergas with cattle excreta. Dohanyos et al. (1997) examinedthe use of cell lysate as a stimulating agent in anaerobicdegradation of municipal raw sludge, excess activatedsludge and their mixture. The eﬀect of lysate is caused bythe still remaining activity of released enzymes and bythe stimulating properties of other compounds that arepresent inside the cells. The improvement of CH
yieldfrom thickened activated sludge ranged from 8.1% to86.4% while in case of a mixture of thickened activatedsludge and primary sludge it was found to vary from 0%to 24%.
3.1.3. Inorganic additives
Several inorganic additives that improve gas pro-duction have also been reported. Shimizu (1992) claimedthat higher concentration of bacteria could be retainedin the digester by the addition of metal cations sincecations increase the density of the bacteria, which arecapable of aggregating by themselves. Wong andCheung (1995) found that the plant with a higher con-tent of heavy metals (Cr, Cu, Ni and Zn) had a higherCH
yield than the control. The addition of iron salts atvarious concentrations [FeSO
(50 mM), FeCl
M)]have been found to enhance gas production rate(Wodzinski et al., 1983; Patel et al., 1993; Rao andSeenayya, 1994; Clark and Hillman, 1995). Nickel ions(2.5 and 5 ppm) enhanced biogas up to 54% due to theactivity of Ni-dependent metallo-enzymes involved inbiogas production (Geeta et al., 1990). Addition of rockphosphate (RP) proved superior to single super phos-phate (SSP) while digesting rice straw in batch fer-menters (Bardiya and Gaur, 1997). Malik et al. (1987)obtained an increase of 8–11% by the addition of ureaand diammonium phosphate (DAP).Certain adsorbents are also reported to improve gasproduction for example Madamwar and Mithal (1986)obtained a maximum enhancement of over 150% withhigher CH
content (65% CH
) on addition of 10 g/lcommercial pectin. According to Kumar et al. (1987)commercial charcoal Darco G-60 resulted in 17% and34.7% increase in biogas in batch and semi continuousfermenters, respectively. Also, the locally producedwood charcoal (16% enhancement in biogas) was foundas good as the commercial charcoal in batch digesters.Patel et al. (1992) found a trend of enhanced gas pro-duction with high CH
content and lower eﬄuent BODand COD with increasing doses of diﬀerent adsorbents(gelatin, polyvinyl alcohol, powdered activatedcharcoal, pectin, kaolin, silica gel, aluminium powder,bentonite and tale powder) on anaerobic digestion of water-hyacinth-cattle dung. They observed (Patel andMadamwar, 1994) a twofold increase in gas productionon addition of 4 g/l silica gel, with CH
content of 72.8%as compared to control (62%). Process stability in-creased with increasing levels of silica gel, indicating thatvolatile acids were consumed at a faster rate in thepresence of an adsorbent.Using Ca and Mg salts as energy supplements, CH
production was enhanced and foaming was avoided(Mathiesen, 1989). Dhawale (1996) found 25–35%enhancement in anaerobic digestion of manure by theaddition of Eosin blue dye at 0.1
M concentration.Gaddy (1994) found a new method for improving theperformance of anaerobic digestion of solid substrate. Itinvolved the addition of at least 1-chelating agent(preferably 1–100
M, especially 10
M) 1:2 diamino-cyclohexane-
, tetraacetic acid, EDTA, citric acid ornitrilotriacetic acid (NTA)) and at least one nutrient(preferably 1–5000
M)) of iron, sulﬁde, sele-nium or nickel, especially FeSO
)to a solid substrate for solubilizing solid nutrients toenhance bacterial growth. Methane production can beincreased or smaller digesters can be used to achieve thesame methane production. Faster start up, greater sta-bility and more rapid recovery from upsets were possibleby using this new method.
3.2. Gas enhancement through recycling of digested slurry/slurry ﬁltrate
The recirculation of digested slurry back into thereactor has been shown to improve the gas productionmarginally, since the microbes washed away are rein-troduced back into the reactor, thereby providing an
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