Dependency of Landfill Gas Generation Parameters on Waste Composition Based on Large-Size Laboratory Degradation Experiments
Landfill gas (LFG) is a product of the biodegradation of municipal solid waste (MSW) under anaerobic conditions. LFG primarily consists of methane (CH4) (40–60%) and carbon dioxide (CO2) (40–60%), both greenhouse gases. Methane has high energy potential that remains largely untapped as a national energy source. In order to recover LFG for energy generation purposes, a reliable estimate of gas generation at landfill sites is necessary. To that end, numerous LFG generation models have been developed with different assumptions made. In this study, three gas generation models – two first order decay (LandGEM and IPCC) and one sigmoidal model (Modified-Gompertz) are considered. The cumulative methane yield prediction of these models is fitted against three degradation experiments on well-characterized MSW specimens with significantly different waste composition ranging from “waste-rich” to “soil-rich”. The results indicate that the sigmoidal model better captures the evolution of methane yield compared to first order decay model and majority of the model parameters follow a systematic trend as a function of waste composition.
KeywordsMunicipal solid waste Biodegradation LFG generation model
This research was supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Computer and Communication Foundations under Grant No. 1442773 and Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF) Scholarship. ConeTec Investigations Ltd. and the ConeTec Education Foundation are acknowledged for their support to the Geotechnical Engineering Laboratories at the University of Michigan. Any opinions, findings, conclusions and recommendations expressed in this paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NSF or ConeTec.
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