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BEST-L  September 2014

BEST-L September 2014

Subject:

Food Waste Friday #243: Food waste recycling to the extreme!

From:

"Graunke,Ryan E" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Graunke,Ryan E

Date:

Fri, 5 Sep 2014 21:56:21 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (39 lines)

Hello BESTers,

A company in England, Advetec, has developed a new method for dealing 
with food waste.  The device, called a Bio Thermic Composter, uses 
bacteria called extremophiles to break down food waste at extremely high 
temperatures.  Extremophiles are microorganisms that are adapted to 
temperatures in excess of 100°C (up to 1000°C), and are found in some 
of the most inhospitable environments - the bacteria used by Advetec 
were harvested from deep-sea ocean vents.  Their process uses an 
in-vessel composting technique mixing food and other organic wastes with 
these extremophiles, starting out at 140 - 150°C and finishing at 300 - 
325°C (266 - 617°F), much hotter than traditional anaerobic digestion 
or aerobic composting.  The process generates its own heat, which 
sustains these high temperatures with minimal external energy input 
(once up to temperature).  Also the waste stream does not have to be 
purely organic, as any non-organic material passes through the system; 
this is often a hindrance to digestion and composting. The resulting 
product is any non-degradable material, typically 3-5% of the initial 
feedstock mass, which even if landfilled, is much less harmful than 
landfilling food waste outright due to less mass and lack of organic 
material.  The high heat also drives off water as steam, which can be 
condensed and used for other purposes.  These aspects help bring down 
the cost to affordable levels, as the company claims.

While this article reads somewhat like a sales pitch for the 
technology, and I see some inherent disadvantages compared to anaerobic 
digestion, namely the reduced or lack of bioenergy and fertilizer 
potential, it is nevertheless any interesting technology and something 
that certainly that may have a place in solving food waste.

Have a great weekend,
Ryan

http://www.waste-management-world.com/articles/print/volume-15/issue-4/features/the-x-tremophiles.html

The X Tremophiles
Waste Management World
Ben Messenger
September 5, 2014

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