Publication date: October 2018Source:Renewable Energy, Volume 126 Author(s): Shunli Wang, Gary L. Hawkins, Brian H. Kiepper, Keshav C. Das Anaerobic digestion (AD) is an attractive technology for treatment of slaughterhouse blood waste for energy recovery to offset energy used in the slaughterhouse. However, no studies have been conducted at the pilot or full scales using such waste streams as the primary substrate. In this study, three 197-L pilot scale two-stage AD systems, with or without bamboo biocarriers, treating poultry blood waste were evaluated at two organic loading rates (OLRs) (low = 0.4 and high = 0.7 g COD L−1 day−1) under mesophilic condition (26 ± 2 °C) for 260 days. Biocarriers were added to immobilize the microflora and increase cell residence time in the digesters. Results show that the system with biocarriers had methane yield of 192 mL g−1 CODadded and COD removal of 32.4% at the high OLR, and methane yield of 384 mL g−1 CODadded and COD removal of 68.5% at the low OLR, which were significantly higher than those of the system without biocarriers (used as control). Methanobrevibacter and Methanobacterium beijingense were the dominant archaea in the system using biocarriers. It is estimated that 39.7–41.4 kJ can be recovered from the treatment of blood waste from each kg of slaughtered livestock weight using the two-stage AD system.