Resource Efficient Innovations Database (REID)

Novel dairy waste treatment process

< Back to search results
Novel dairy waste treatment process
Microbial fuel cell technology could offer a more effective and lower cost alternative to anaerobic digestion for dairy process waste streams
In Development – The team is planning to conduct three large-scale trials with food companies during 2012 with a view to developing a commercially viable production model.

Benefits
Other

Product Categories
Drinks, Food

Relevant Materials
Not Applicable

Relevant Packaging Formats
Not Applicable

Supply Chain Phase
Processing

Details

A research consortium has successfully developed and tested microbial fuel cell (MFC) technology for processing diary processor waste streams to generate energy. The process is being developed as an alternative and more effective solution compared to standard anaerobic digestion (AD). The MFC technology differs from anaerobic digestion in that it requires less input energy to access the energy contained within the waste stream, and the time taken to access that energy is shorter.

The MFC digestion process takes 24-48 hours, compared to 2-3 weeks for anaerobic digestion. The output from the process is a hydrogen-based biogas. Treating water using this process also reduces the chemical oxygen demand (COD) of the effluent.
Successful trials have been performed using a 1,000litre pilot unit and the team is now developing a pre-treatment process that should allow the MFC to take solid food as well as waste water. The research team estimates that the units could cost as little as 25% of the cost of an AD plant. The team is now planning to conduct three large-scale trials with food companies with a view to developing a commercially viable production model. The development work has been a joint effort of experts from Lindhurst Engineering, University of Nottingham, and treatment systems company Clearfleau.
The content in this entry has been obtained from publicly available information sources only (e.g. press releases, website and trade press articles) and is subject to completion of a validation process with the technology supplier.

Potential Benefits

The principal benefit of this technology will be improved management of diary process wastes at lower cost.

Intellectual Property

The technology is the result of collaboration between Lindhurst Engineering, University of Nottingham, and treatment systems company Clearfleau.

Consultant View

Treatment of effluent and other process waste streams from food production processes is a major challenge for the industry. Many waste streams can be utilized to generate energy or to manufacture new materials. For example, several projects are currently investigating ways of using effluent as a building block for generating biopolymers. Readers interested in improving effluent treatment processes should search the REID database using terms such as “wastewater” and “effluent”.

Contacts and Further Information

Simon Hawkins
Commercial Director
Lindhurst Innovation Engineering Limited
Midland Road
Sutton-in-Ashfield
Nottinghamshire
NG17 5GS
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0) 1623 557420
Email: simon@lindhurst.co.uk

Copyright 2013 WRAP | Terms | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Cookies Policy Contact Us |