A novel technique for evaluating foam dynamics in anaerobic digesters

C. Park, S. W. Hermanowicz, D. Jolis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Foaming in anaerobic digesters has severe impacts on process efficiency and operational costs. In this study, we present an experimental method to determine foam behaviour and stability for various foaming solutions. This novel technique measured foam conductivity at different heights along a foam column allowing changes in foam composition to be monitored in time. We analysed foam stability which is primarily dependent on the foam drainage velocity, a quantity that can be determined from forced drainage experiments. The drainage velocity increased in the presence of anaerobic digester sludge, compared to simple surfactant foam. We proposed a new understanding of the effect of sludge particles on the foam stability. Both physical properties (foam physical constant, β) of foam and bubble surface interactions by applying stable and unstable foam in addition of surfactants are also evaluated and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2595-2601
Number of pages7
JournalWater Science and Technology
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2013


  • Anaerobic sludge
  • Conductivity
  • Drainage
  • Foam stability


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