The objective of this research was mesophilic anaerobic digestion of blackwater from vacuum toilets (BW) and kitchen refuse (KR) in a CSTR within an ecological sanitation system. A detailed investigation of the BW characteristics was carried out. Research on anaerobic digestion was performed with CSTR of 10 l volume at HRT of 10, 15 and 20 days. The digestion of BW at 20 days HRT showed stable performance without inhibition effects, in spite of relatively high ammonium concentrations. The removal of total and particulate COD was 61% and 53%, respectively, and the methane yield 10 l CH4/cap/day. The addition of kitchen refuse (KR) improved the performance of the CSTR in terms of COD removal efficiency and methane yield. At 20 days HRT the removal of total and particulate COD increased up to 71% and 67%, respectively, and the methane yield to 27 l CH4/cap/day. The results at 15 days HRT showed similar performance. At HRT of 10 days, the anaerobic treatment was limited but reached steady state conditions at higher VFA concentrations in the effluent, with a decrease of COD removal of 30 to 33% and of methane yields of 19 to 21%.

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