In this work, an optimization method is implemented in an anaerobic digestion model to estimate its kinetic parameters and yield coefficients. This method combines the use of advanced state estimation schemes and powerful nonlinear programming techniques to yield fast and accurate estimates of the aforementioned parameters. In this method, we first implement an asymptotic observer to provide estimates of the non-measured variables (such as biomass concentration) and good guesses for the initial conditions of the parameter estimation algorithm. These results are then used by the successive quadratic programming (SQP) technique to calculate the kinetic parameters and yield coefficients of the anaerobic digestion process. The model, provided with the estimated parameters, is tested with experimental data from a pilot-scale fixed bed reactor treating raw industrial wine distillery wastewater. It is shown that SQP reaches a fast and accurate estimation of the kinetic parameters despite highly noise corrupted experimental data and time varying inputs variables. A statistical analysis is also performed to validate the combined estimation method. Finally, a comparison between the proposed method and the traditional Marquardt technique shows that both yield similar results; however, the calculation time of the traditional technique is considerable higher than that of the proposed method.

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