WP2 Digestion

Work-Package 2: Feedstock sustainability and digestion

WP Leader: UCC     Other Partners: LIU, TEA, SBF



Project title

Host institution

ESR 2.1


Sustainability and Life Cycle Assessment of feedstock digestion systems


ESR 2.2


Synergies from co-digestion of grass silage with other feedstocks


ESR 2.3


The role of trace elements in rheology dynamics, foaming potential, and microbial response for efficient biogas production


ER 2.4


Development of macroalgae as substrate for biogas production


Objectives: Three projects will widen the range of suitable feedstocks through digester operation with different substrates, optimising digestion processes and provide guidelines for their utilisation. A fourth project will develop a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) model for sustainability evaluation.

Novel Aspects: Guidelines enabling the optimal selection of new feedstocks and digestion processes. Establishment of guidelines for optimal matching of silages and animal slurries as feedstocks for biogas production. Development of guidelines for trace element addition to biogas plants. Development of technical and logistical guidelines for biogas production from algae.

Synergy and Collaboration: The partners have considerable synergy in the operation of lab and pilot scale biogas reactors. Common tasks across several partners will be (1) operation of digesters for experimental optimisation (2) assessment of new and existing feedstocks; energy crops, slurry, seaweed, and (3) sample processing, pre-treatments, micronutrient content and codigestion. This will lead to greater process standardisation and integration of complementary methods. UCC have experience in grass silage feedstock digestion systems and will collaborate with Project 2.2 (TEA) in the assessment of co-digestion performance. Project 2.3 will assess trace elements which will also be applicable to enhancing the efficiency of algae digestion in Project 2.4.

Risk and contingency: There may be challenges in applying some of the lab-scale findings to industrial conditions. As a contingency plan, the consortium will work closely with the industrial members and associated partners to ensure that the industrial needs are carefully addressed.

Private Sector role: Improved digestion processes will benefit companies by improving biogas yield, process stability and processing speed. Associated partners WIS, GREEN, B9, EG, AFBI and BWE, will provide data, samples, training and secondment opportunities to fellows in WP2. Additional dissemination opportunities will be provided by CRÉ and DOENI (numerous contacts).