On 23 May 2019, Ms Teju Madapura Eregowda successfully presented and defended her PhD thesis and was awarded with a Doctoral degree. Professor Piet Lens was her promotor.
The PhD research focused on
Anaerobic treatment and resource recovery from methanol rich waste gases and wastewaters
Anaerobic treatment of the methanol rich chemical pulping industrial waste streams to explore the possibilities of resource recovery through biogas or volatile fatty acids (VFA) production. With a global drive towards reducing the carbon footprint from greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere, anaerobic treatment and resource recovery is a potential approach to handle the industrial effluents that are rich in organic carbon.
In her doctoral dissertation, MSc Tejaswini Eregowda focused on the anaerobic treatment of methanol rich industrial effluents. The main objectives were to examine the removal rates of gas-phase methanol and the treatment of a methanol-rich industrial effluent (foul condensate of the chemical pulping industry), to compare the resource recovery in the form of biogas or VFA production and to recover VFA using anion exchange resins.
Eregowda’s thesis presents various hybrid approaches for the treatment and utilization of methanol-rich gaseous and liquid effluents of a chemical pulping mill for VFA production and recovery. Gas-phase methanol can be utilized as a carbon source and electron donor for the reduction of sulfur and selenium oxyanion rich wastewater. Concerning the treatment of foul condensate, resource recovery in terms of biogas production is economically and technically more viable over VFA production. In the case of gaseous effluents such as non-condensable gases (NCG), resource recovery in terms VFA production is preferable. As a downstream process, the recovery of individual VFA can be achieved through sequential adsorption using different types of ion exchange resins.