Publications by authors named "Arturo F Chica"

6 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Wastewater nutrient recovery using twin-layer microalgae technology for biofertilizer production.

Water Sci Technol 2020 Sep;82(6):1044-1061

BIOMASA PENINSULAR S.A., Calle Constancia 38, Bajo, 28002 Madrid, Spain.

This study evaluates the feasibility of advanced biofilm microalgae cultivation in a twin layer (TL) system for nutrient removal (N and P) as the tertiary treatment in small wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) located in sensitive areas. Furthermore, the potential valorisation of microalgae biomass as a component of bio-based fertilizers is assessed. Scenedesmus sp. was chosen among 33 microalgae strains for inoculation of TL due to its high growth rate and its nutrient uptake capacity. The tests carried out in the prototype were markedly efficient for total soluble and ammoniacal nitrogen removal (up to 66 and 94%, respectively). In terms of potential valorisation of microalgae, the nutrient content was 5.5% N (over 40% protein), 8.8% PO and 1.5% KO, high enzymatic activity, very low levels of heavy metals and no detectable pathogen presence. However, in the formulation of solid-state bio-based fertilizers, the microalgae proportions in blends of over 2% of microalgae led to negative effects on ryegrass (Lolium perenne L. ssp.) and barley (Hordeum vulgare ssp.). The obtained results demonstrate that TL represents a promising technology, which allows efficient tertiary treatment of urban wastewater and the production of high-quality bio-based fertilizer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2166/wst.2020.372DOI Listing
September 2020

Methane production by anaerobic co-digestion of mixed agricultural waste: cabbage and cauliflower.

Environ Technol 2020 Jun 1:1-9. Epub 2020 Jun 1.

Department of Inorganic Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, University of Córdoba, Córdoba, Spain.

Anaerobic co-digestion of residual cabbage and cauliflower mixed at a ratio 1:1 (w/w) was investigated in two continuously stirred tank reactors under mesophilic conditions to ensure stability and enhanced methane generation. The experiments, including start-up, inoculum acclimatisation and treatment of the waste mixture, were carried out over a 65-day period. The characterisation results showed that the residual mixture contained a high proportion of total Kjeldahl nitrogen (around 37 g N/kg dry weight). The maximum value of methanogenic yield potential was found to be 250 L/kg VS (volatile solid) added, at STP conditions (0°C, 1 atm), by loading organic substrate at a concentration of 1 g VS/L, while its biodegradability was 60%. However, instability of the biomethanisation process was observed after 17 days, which might be a consequence of the high concentration of nitrogen in the reactors. The evaluation of the kinetics of the valorisation process revealed that the waste mixture studied can easily be biodegraded through anaerobic co-digestion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09593330.2020.1770341DOI Listing
June 2020

Anaerobic co-digestion of sewage sludge and strawberry extrudate under mesophilic conditions.

Environ Technol 2014 Nov-Dec;35(21-24):2920-7. Epub 2014 Jun 19.

a Department of Inorganic Chemistry and Chemical Engineering , University of Cordoba , Cordoba , Spain.

The biomethanization of sewage sludge has several disadvantages such as low methane yield, poor biodegradability and nutrient imbalance. In this paper, a sewage sludge and strawberry extrudate mixture in a proportion of 40:60 (wet weight) is proposed to improve the viability of the process. The addition of an easily biodegradable co-substrate enhanced the nutrient balance and diluted the heavy metals and inhibitors from sewage sludge. Two different experimental set-ups at lab and semi-pilot scale were employed in order to ensure the reproducibility and significance of the obtained values. Co-digestion improved the stability of the process by decreasing the alkalinity to a mean value of 3215 ± 190 mg CaCO₃/L, while maintaining the pH within the optimal range for anaerobic digestion. The methane yield coefficient and biodegradability were 176 L/kg VS (total volatile solids) (0°C, 1 atm) and 81% (VS), respectively. Kinetic parameters decreased at the highest loads, suggesting the occurrence of a slowing down phenomenon. A quality organic amendment with a heavy metal content lower than the limits established under European legislation for agricultural applications was obtained from the digestate of the proposed treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09593330.2014.925512DOI Listing
March 2015

Improvement of mesophilic anaerobic co-digestion of agri-food waste by addition of glycerol.

J Environ Manage 2014 Jul 12;140:76-82. Epub 2014 Apr 12.

Department of Inorganic Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, University of Cordoba, Campus Universitario de Rabanales, Edificio Marie Curie (C-3), Ctra. N-IV, km 396, 14071 Cordoba, Spain. Electronic address:

Anaerobic co-digestion is a promising alternative to manage agri-food waste rather than landfilling, composting or incineration. But improvement of methane yield and biodegradability is often required to optimize its economic viability. Biomethanization of agri-food solid waste presents the disadvantage of a slow hydrolytic phase, which might be enhanced by adding a readily digestible substrate such as glycerol. In this study, strawberry extrudate, fish waste and crude glycerol derived from biodiesel manufacturing are mixed at a proportion of 54:5:41, in VS (VS, total volatile solids), respectively. The mesophilic anaerobic co-digestion at lab-scale of the mixture was stable at loads lower than 1.85 g VS/L, reaching a methane yield coefficient of 308 L CH4/kg VS (0 °C, 1 atm) and a biodegradability of 96.7%, in VS. Moreover, the treatment capacity of strawberry and fish waste was increased 16% at adding the crude glycerol. An economic assessment was also carried out in order to evaluate the applicability of the proposed process. Even in a pessimistic scenario, the net balance was found to be positive. The glycerol adding implied a net saving in a range from 25.5 to 42.1 €/t if compared to landfill disposal.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2014.02.028DOI Listing
July 2014

Evaluation of the anaerobic co-digestion of sewage sludge and tomato waste at mesophilic temperature.

Appl Biochem Biotechnol 2014 Apr 28;172(8):3862-74. Epub 2014 Feb 28.

Laboratory of Environmental Biotechnology and Quality, Faculty of Sciences, University Ibn Tofail (Morocco), BP 133, Kenitra, Morocco.

Sewage sludge is a hazardous waste, which must be managed adequately. Mesophilic anaerobic digestion is a widely employed treatment for sewage sludge involving several disadvantages such as low methane yield, poor biodegradability, and nutrient imbalance. Tomato waste was proposed as an easily biodegradable co-substrate to increase the viability of the process in a centralized system. The mixture proportion of sewage sludge and tomato waste evaluated was 95:5 (wet weight), respectively. The stability was maintained within correct parameters in an organic loading rate from 0.4 to 2.2 kg total volatile solids (VS)/m(3) day. Moreover, the methane yield coefficient was 159 l/kg VS (0 °C, 1 atm), and the studied mixture showed a high anaerobic biodegradability of 95 % (in VS). Although the ammonia concentration increased until 1,864 ± 23 mg/l, no inhibition phenomenon was determined in the stability variables, methane yield, or kinetics parameters studied.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12010-014-0790-9DOI Listing
April 2014
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