Faculty Advisor

Thompson, Robert W.


Anaerobic digestion is a process which organic material decay in an oxygen free or low oxygen environment. The process releases heat and biogas, which contains methane, and other gases. The first known use of anaerobic digestion was in 1859. Today, anaerobic digestion is commonly used for animal waste from farms, food waste from restaurants or food processing plants and wastewater treatment plants. Biogas generated from anaerobic digesters can be used to generate thermal or electrical energy, which also reduces methane emissions. Anaerobic digestion can be used in many more parts of the world. The parameters that affect it's usage is the size of the plant or farm, amount of manure being produced, initial capital cost, frequent maintenance,land land use laws and utility companies.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2010

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Chemical Engineering

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