BIOMAN – Ultrasound for Biomass Digestion

  • Energy produced from biogas is one of the most important renewable resources and is conditioned by a supply of substrates and waste materials compatible with responsible use of arable lands, and safe food and feed production.
  • BIOMAN is an EU funded project for the investigation of several physical and enzymatic pre-treatment strategies and technology for biogas plants.
  • Power ultrasound is a proven method to improve the digestion of biomass and thereby to increase the biogas yield significantly.
Sonication is a proven pre-treatment to improve the digestion of biomass

Biogas production with reinjection loop


Biological waste materials such as manure and agricultural residues offer an abundant resource for the production, in Europe and worldwide. However, as these substrates contain a high amount of fibres (5-80% of dry matter content) with a low methane potential, the economical benefits for the operation of a biogas plant are often too low to be economically profitable due to the low biogas yield per ton. To improve the biogas yield, pretreatments (e.g. mechanical, thermal, chemical and biological) have been shown to be beneficial (Angelidaki & Ahring, 2000; Uellendahl et al., 2007). In the Bioman project, a treatment concept for the Re-Injection Loop is investigated with the goal to increase the biogas yield per ton of waste biomass, with a prerequisite that the benefits of the treatment exceed the operational costs to ensure economical sustainability.
BIOMAN will for a series of SMEs develop physical and enzymatic pre-treatment strategies and technology for biogas plants. This will enable the consortium members of SME to bring complete solutions to the market and enable the agricultural sector to run biogas plants directly on cattle manure and straw.

The Reinjection Loop

“The Re-Injection Loop“ ́ is for producing biogas from recalcitrant low-energy substrates with a high content of lignocellulose by combining a range of mechanical and enzymatic treatments, see Figure 1. Downsizing, ultra sound and enzymatic treatments are technologies to be used in the Re-Injection Loop and will be applied on pre-digested and dewatered biomasses before recirculation to the biogas reactor and of key focus is the overall economic sustainability (Uellendahl et al. 2013).


BIOMAN is funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme managed by REA – Research Executive Agency: (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n0 FP7-SME-2012, 315664, “BIOMAN”.

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  • Uellendahl, H., Njoku, S.I., Kragelund, C., Ottosen, L.,Ruiz , B.(2013). Boosting the economy of manure based biogas plants. Proceedings of the International Anaerobic Digestion Symposium at BiogasWorld 2013, April 23- 25, Berlin.
  • Angelidaki, I. and Ahring, B. K. (2000): Methods for increasing the biogas potential from the recalcitrant organic matter contained in manure. Water Science & Technology, 41(3): 189-194.
  • Uellendahl, H., Mladenovska, Z. and Ahring, B.K. (2007): Wet oxidation of crude manure and manure fibres: Substrate characteristics influencing the pretreatment efficiency for increasing the biogas yield of manure. Proceedings 11th World Congress on Anaerobic Digestion, 23-27 September, 2007, Brisbane, Australia.

Facts Worth Knowing

Biogas consists of a mixture of different gases that are produced by the breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen. The main components of biogas are methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2). Biogas can be produced from raw materials such as agricultural waste, manure, municipal waste, plant material, sewage, green waste or food waste. It is a renewable energy source and in many cases exerts a very small carbon footprint.
Since methane, hydrogen, and carbon monoxide (CO) can be combusted or oxidized with oxygen, biogas is used as a renewable energy source. This energy is mostly used as fuel and for heating purposes or it is converted via gas engine into electricity and heat.

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