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Hydrothermal Treatment is an Innovative way of Nutrient Recovery and Waste Minimization

Description:

Recovery of the nutrients (primarily, nitrogen and phosphorous) in solid waste is important for better land nutrient management practices and remediation of nutrient pollution of surrounding waterways, and is a path forward to generating renewable nutrients. Hydrothermal treatment (HT) employs the ‘subcritical water as a medium (combination of heat and water at high temperature and high pressure) to convert unutilized solid waste resources (animal wastes, sewage sludge and biomass wastes) into a uniform product. HT promotes solubilization of a certain amount of nutrients from high moisture biomass/solid waste that can be recovered and reused. The treated solid from HT method (as often known as, “hydrochar”) can be used as a solid fuel or a carbon biomaterial. Recovery of renewable nutrients and bioproducts can markedly impact the economy of livestock operations and agriculture.

Completion Objectives:

  • Perform literature review on sources and generation of solid wastes in New Mexico and organic and inorganic constituents of the above feedstock; comment on environmental impacts of solid wastes and compile information on their current uses.
  • Prepare an overview of thermochemical and biochemical/biological conversion of solid wastes and summarize the current methods of nutrient recovery from organic wastes.
  • Compare and contrast Hydrothermal Treatment and Anaerobic Digestion (AD) pathways for recovery of high value nutrients and biomaterials and provide information on their cost-economics.

Faculty Advisor:

Jena

Required Competencies

Senior standing in CHME

Student Researcher:

TBD


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