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Composting municipal biosolids in polyethylene sleeves with forced aeration: Process control, air emissions, sanitary and agronomic aspects

Citation:

Avidov, R. ; Saadi, I. ; Krassnovsky, A. ; Hanan, A. ; Medina, S. ; Raviv, M. ; Chen, Y. ; Laor, Y. Composting municipal biosolids in polyethylene sleeves with forced aeration: Process control, air emissions, sanitary and agronomic aspects. Waste Management 2017, 67, 32-42.

Abstract:

Composting in polyethylene sleeves with forced aeration may minimize odor emissions, vectors attraction and leachates associated with open windrows. A disadvantage of this technology is the lack of mixing during composting, potentially leading to non-uniform products. In two pilot experiments using biosolids and green waste (1:1; v:v), thermophilic conditions (>45 °C) were maintained for two months, with successful control of oxygen levels and sufficient moisture. Emitted odors declined from 1.5–3.8 × 105 to 5.9 × 103–2.3 × 104 odor units m−3-air in the first 3 weeks of the process, emphasizing the need of odor control primarily during this period. Therefore, composting might be managed in two phases: (i) a closed sleeve for 6–8 weeks during which the odor is treated; (ii) an open pile (odor control is not necessary). Reduction of salmonella, E. coli and coliforms was effective initially, meeting the standards of “Class A” biosolids; however, total and fecal coliforms density increased after opening the second sleeve and exceeded the standard of 1000 most probable number (MPN) per g dry matter. Compost maturity was achieved in the open piles following the two sleeves and the final compost was non-phytotoxic and beneficial as a soil additive. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

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