Upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) methane fermentation treatment of cow manure that was subjected to screw pressing, thermal treatment and subsequent solid–liquid separation was studied. Conducting batch scale tests at temperatures between 140 and 180 °C, the optimal temperature for sludge settling and the color suppression was found to be between160–170 °C. UASB treatment was carried out with a supernatant obtained from the thermal treatment at the optimal conditions (170 °C for 30 minutes) and polymer-dosed solid–liquid separation. In the UASB treatment with a CODCr loading of 11.7 kg/m3/d and water temperature of 32.2 °C, the CODCr level dropped from 16,360 mg/L in raw water to 3,940 mg/L in treated water (CODCr removal rate of 75.9%), and the methane production rate per CODCr was 0.187 Nm3/kg. Using wastewater thermal-treated at the optimal conditions, also a methane fermentation treatment with a continuously stirred tank reactor (CSTR) was conducted (CODCr in raw water: 38,000 mg/L, hydraulic retention time (HRT): 20 days, 35 °C). At the CODCr loading of 1.9 kg/m3/d, the methane production rate per CODCr was 0.153 Nm3/kg. This result shows that UASB treatment using thermal pre-treatment provides a CODCr loading of four times or more and a methane production rate of 1.3 times higher than the CSTR treatment.

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