Effect of different forced aeration methods on Vertical temperature distribution and reaction rates During composting
The application of forced aeration, namely in the upflow (blowing) or downflow (suction) mode has been increasing in modern composting processes. These aeration modes often create a sharp temperature gradient in the composting mass. Examples of widely varying temperatures at different layers of controlled and non-controlled aerated piles have been reported frequently (Fernandes et al., 1994; Stentiford et al., 1985). In order to mitigate or eliminate temperature gradients, in this study the effect of different aeration methods on the vertical distribution of temperature and reaction rate during composting was investigated at pilot-scale. The following aeration methods were studied: upflow, downflow, alternate upflow/downflow, and upflow with internal air recirculation. An attempt was made to develop a simple mathematical model to simulate and predict the extent of organic waste egradation.