Increased biological hydrogen production with reduced organic loading

Steven W. Van Ginkel, Bruce Ernest Logan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

196 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

An experimental matrix consisting of reactor hydraulic retention time (HRT) and glucose loading rate was tested to understand the effect of organic loading on H2 production in chemostat reactors. In order to vary the glucose loading rate over a range of 0.5-18.9 g/h, the glucose concentration in the feed was varied from 2.5 to 10 g COD/L under conditions where the HRT varied from 1 to 10 h (30°C, pH=5.5). Decreasing the glucose loading rate over this range increased the hydrogen yield from 1.7 to 2.8 mol-H2/mol- glucose. High yields of hydrogen were consistent with a high molar acetate:butyrate ratio of 1.08:1 as more hydrogen is produced with acetate as a product (4 mol-H2/mol-acetate) than with butyrate (2 mol-H 2/mol-butyrate). It was thought that the decrease in yield with organic loading rate resulted from an overall decreased rate of hydrogen production. As the rate of gas production is reduced, H2 supersaturation in the liquid phase is likely reduced, relieving inhibition due to H2. Flocculation was also an important factor in the performance of the reactor. At the 5-10 g COD/L influent glucose concentrations, substantial flocculation was observed particularly as the feeding rate was increased due to a reduction in the HRT from 10 to 2.5 h. At the HRT of 2.5 h, biomass concentrations reached as much as 25 g/L. The flocculant nature of the biomass allowed reactor operation at low HRTs with steady H2 production and >90% glucose removal. However, when the HRT was reduced to 1 h at a glucose feed concentration of 2.5 g COD/L, there was little flocculation evident resulting in wash-out of the culture. These results suggest that hydrogen yields will be optimized for more dilute feeds and lower organic loading rates than have typically been used in biohydrogen reactor studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3819-3826
Number of pages8
JournalWater Research
Volume39
Issue number16
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2005

Fingerprint

Hydrogen production
Glucose
glucose
hydrogen
Hydraulics
hydraulics
Flocculation
flocculation
acetate
Hydrogen
Biomass
Chemostats
Reactor operation
chemostat
rate
Supersaturation
biomass
supersaturation
gas production
reactor

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecological Modeling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

Cite this

Van Ginkel, Steven W. ; Logan, Bruce Ernest. / Increased biological hydrogen production with reduced organic loading. In: Water Research. 2005 ; Vol. 39, No. 16. pp. 3819-3826.
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Increased biological hydrogen production with reduced organic loading. / Van Ginkel, Steven W.; Logan, Bruce Ernest.

In: Water Research, Vol. 39, No. 16, 01.10.2005, p. 3819-3826.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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