Patent Number: 6,254,775

Title: Anaerobic digester system and method

Abstract: An anaerobic digester system has a vertically upright vessel, a matrix arranged in the vessel supporting a microorganism biomass thereon, an input for supplying an input slurry of liquid and suspended solids at an upper portion of the vessel above the matrix, a gas output at the top of the vessel for withdrawing gas generated by anaerobic digestion of solids, and an effluent output at the bottom of the vessel for withdrawing liquid and remaining solids. The vessel has a preferred liquid height to diameter ratio of 2 to 1, and is constructed of inert fiberglass-reinforced plastic coated with a translucent blue gel pigment layer for filtering light at wavelengths that promote biomass cultivation. The matrix is formed as an array of panels mounted to a spindle with wheels fixed at spaced intervals along its vertical height, and the panel are made of a polyethylene grass matting providing a high surface area to volume ratio of at least 20 to 1. Gas from the top of the vessel is recycled to the bottom to generate bubbles for mixing the feedstock. The related method of anaerobic digestion includes comminuting input wastes with a slurry grinder into a pumpable slurry 8-10 % by weight solids, and providing as the biomass hydrolytic bacteria, and fermentative bacteria including acetogenic and methanogenic bacteria to produce a methane gas product. Other products include an organic soil additive, bacterial solids plant food, and a filtrate used as plant tonic.

Inventors: McElvaney; James D. (Marietta, GA)


International Classification: C02F 3/10 (20060101); C02F 11/04 (20060101); C12M 1/107 (20060101); C02F 003/00 ()

Expiration Date: 07/03/2018