Self-fermentation: Innovative pretreatment for use high concentration of olive mill wastewater in anaerobic digestion plant

A. Signorini, G. Lembo, G. Massini, D. Pizzichini, M. Fenice

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This study aimed to evaluate the impact of self fermentation on methane production as biological pretreatment of olive mill wastewater (OMW). The self-fermentation was carried out at room temperature without mixing and at natural light cycle. The batch assays were performed at the influent substrate concentration of 36.7 g VS/l (OMW 100%), 18,4 g VS/l (OMW 50%) and 9.2 g VS/l (OMW 25%). The methane production was performed at 37°C in mixing condition. The results of methane production were compared with those obtained using untreated OMW. The results of this study showed that the self fermentation process is a very effective pretreatment to produce methane. Only the self-fermented samples have produced methane from undiluted OMW and a maximum cumulative methane production of 7583 ± 138 mlCH4/L and a yield of 246 ± 10 mlCH4/ gVS were obtained. A yield increase of +13.5% at OMW dilution of 50% was also achieved as compared to untreated OMW results. Interestingly, in the anaerobic digestion of untreated OMW, high hydrogen yields, with an average value of 46.8 ± 1.9 mlH2/gVS, were obtained. Moreover a depletion around 20% v/v of polyphenols was recorded for all experimental set.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Forestry
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal

Cite this