The up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor is a promising method for the treatment of high-strength industrial wastewaters due to advantage of its high treatment capacity and settleable suspended biomass retention. Molasses wastewater as a sugar-rich waste is one of the most valuable raw material for bioenergy production due to its high organic strength and bioavailability. Interpretation for complex interactions of microbial community structures and operational parameters can help to establish stable biogas production. RNA-based approach for biogas production systems is recommended for analysis of functionally active community members which are significantly underestimated. In this study, methane production and active microbial community were characterized in an UASB reactor using molasses wastewater as feedstock. The UASB reactor achieved a stable process performance at an organic loading rate of 1.7~13.8-g chemical oxygen demand (COD,·L−1 day−1; 87–95 % COD removal efficiencies), and the maximum methane production rate was 4.01 L-CH4·at 13.8 g-COD L−1 day−1. Lactococcus and Methanosaeta were comprised up to 84 and 80 % of the active bacterial and archaeal communities, respectively. Network analysis of reactor performance and microbial community revealed that Lactococcus and Methanosaeta were network hub nodes and positively correlated each other. In addition, they were positively correlated with methane production and organic loading rate, and they shared the other microbial hub nodes as neighbors. The results indicate that the close association between Lactococcus and Methanosaeta is responsible for the stable production of methane in the UASB reactor using molasses wastewater.
- Microbial community
- Molasses wastewater
- Up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket