The aim of this study was to develop an automatic system based on selected parameters collected from the biological process to control a fluidized-bed reactor. In the first part of this study, identification of parameters sensitive to overloads was carried out with vinasses as wastewater. From these results, three parameters, considered as the most realistic for the monitoring of the reactor, were selected: pH in the liquid phase, the biogas production and its concentration of dihydrogen. These were used to develop an algorithm based on expert system principle. This automatic control system calculated the flow rate of the feeding pump in order to adjust continuously the load applied to the reactor. The system was used to monitor and control several kinds of overload in an anaerobic fluidized bed reactor, of laboratory and pilot scales. The strategy used was able to operate automatically the digesters.

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