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Brownsburg-Chatham, Canada

Elbeshbishy E.,University of Western Ontario | Nakhla G.,University of Western Ontario | Hafez H.,GreenField Ethanol Inc.
Bioresource Technology | Year: 2012

Biochemical methane potential tests were conducted to evaluate the effect of using a blank versus a pre-incubated inoculum in digestion of primary sludge at different waste to inoculum ratios (S/X). In addition, this study explored the influence of using two different anaerobic inoculum sources on the digestion of food waste: digested sludge from a municipal wastewater treatment plant and from a digester treating the organic fraction of municipal solid wastes. The results revealed that although there was no significant difference in methane yield (on average 114mLCH 4/g TCOD sub) or biodegradability (on average 28.3%) of primary sludge using pre-incubated or non-incubated inocula, the maximum methane production rates using non-incubated inoculum were higher than those using pre-incubated inoculum at all S/X ratios. Moreover, interestingly the inoculum from an anaerobic digester treating municipal wastewater sludge was superior over the inoculum from anaerobic digester treating food waste in digesting food waste. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

GreenField Ethanol Inc. | Date: 2012-07-20

Disclosed is a method of pretreating biomass in two pretreatment stages as part of a biofuel production process. The first stage pretreatment is carried out by heating the biomass to a first stage temperature of 140 C. to 180 C. for a first stage time of 30 minutes to 2 hours at a first stage pressure of 105 to 150 psig; and the second stage is carried out by heating the biomass to a second stage temperature of 190 C. to 210 C. for a second stage time of 2 to 10 minutes at a second stage pressure of 167 to 262 psig. The biomass may be initially conditioned prior to the first pretreatment stage by atmospheric steam heating and adjusting the moisture content of the biomass. Hemicellulose and inhibitors (inhibitory compounds) to downstream hydrolysis and fermentation are preferably removed between the first and second pretreating stages, more preferably after each pretreatment stage.

GreenField Ethanol Inc. | Date: 2012-07-20

A process for separation of solid and liquid components in a distillation whole stillage utilizing airless spray drying is disclosed, which is more efficient and economical than conventional processes. In the process, distillation whole stillage resulting from distillation of fermented biomass is first subjected to an evaporation step for separating the whole stillage into a condensate and a concentrate including water, dissolved solids and suspended solids. The concentrate is then subjected to airless steam spray drying for converting the concentrate into dried solids, steam and vapors. All steam and vapors resulting from the airless steam spray drying step are then redirected as energy source to a processing step upstream of the airless spray drying step. At least some of the steam generated in the airless spray drying step is airless steam.

GreenField Ethanol Inc. | Date: 2013-04-05

Disclosed is a solid/liquid separation apparatus including an extruder press combined with a solid/fluid separation module for separating fluid from a mass of solids compressed by the extruder at elevated pressures. The extruder includes two or more extruder screws with flighting intercalated at least along a part of the extruder barrel. The separation module forms a continuation of the barrel, receives the pressurized mass and at least a portion of the twin screws, and includes a filter pack consisting of a filter plate and a backer plate. The filter plate has a throughgoing filter slot extending away from a core opening and into the filter plate for directing fluid away from the core opening. The backer plate has a core opening shaped and sized equal to the barrel and defines a passage for guiding fluid collected in the filter slot to an exterior of the filter pack.

A solid/fluid separation module and pretreatment apparatus and method enables pretreatment of biomass at high temperature and pressure with the ability to vary residence and processing times.

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