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Potential of Duckweed for Swine Wastewater Nutrient removal and Biomass Valorisation through Anaerobic Co-digestion

Original scientific paper

Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
Volume 5, Issue 2, June 2017, pp 127-138
DOI: https://doi.org/10.13044/j.sdewes.d5.0137
Luis Pena1, Margarida Oliveira2 , Rita Fragoso2, Elizabeth Duarte2
1 Instituto Superior de Agronomia, University of Lisbon, Tapada da Ajuda 1349-017, Lisboa, Portugal
2 Linking Landscape, Environment, Agriculture and Food (LEAF), Research Centre, Instituto Superior de Agronomia, University of Lisbon, Tapada da Ajuda 1349-017, Lisboa, Portugal


Over the last decades, phytodepuration has been considered an efficient technology to treat wastewaters. The present study reports a bench scale depuration assay of swine wastewater using Lemna minor. The highest observed growth rate obtained in swine wastewater was 3.1 ± 0.3 gDW m−2 day−1 and the highest nitrogen and phosphorus uptake were 140 mg N m−2 day−1 and 3.47 mg P m−2 day−1, respectively. The chemical oxygen demand removal efficiency in the swine wastewater assay was 58.9 ± 2.0%. Furthermore, the biomass valorisation by anaerobic co-digestion with swine wastewater was assessed. Results showed a clear improvement in specific methane production rate (around 40%) when compared to mono-substrate anaerobic digestion. The highest methane specific production, 131.0 ± 0.8 mL CH4 g−1 chemical oxygen demand, was obtained with a mixture containing 100 g of duckweed per liter of pre-treated swine wastewater. The water-nutrients-energy nexus approach showed to be promising for swine waste management.

Keywords: Anaerobic co-digestion, Biogas, Biomass production, Duckweed, Lemna minor, Swine slurry.

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