Abstract

Slow-pyrolysis is a treatment technology that is being explored for treatment of faecal sludge (FS) from onsite sanitation technologies. Next to pathogen inactivation, the technology produces treatment products. Revenues from these products could offset treatment costs and contribute to financially viable sanitation. In comparison to lignocellulosic biomass and other biowastes, little information is available on operating parameters for FS pyrolysis to produce char for different resource recovery options. In Kampala, Uganda, this bench-scale study investigated the influence of two major operating parameters, hold time (10, 20 and 40 minutes) and pyrolysis temperature (350, 450 and 600 °C) for pyrolysis of FS into char for solid fuel production, soil enhancement and carbon sequestration. Hold time: 10 min was the most suitable hold time for all resource recovery options as char characteristics had only minor variations between hold times. Temperature: Char characteristics identified 350 °C as the most suitable for fuel production and 450 or 600 °C for carbon sequestration. FS char had characteristics for soil enhancement comparable to biowaste and lignocellulosic biomass chars, with heavy metal concentration exceeding guideline concentrations. The most suitable temperature needs to be selected based on plant and soil type, and legal regulations.

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