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HYKOM – Combination of Hygienisation and Hydrolysis as Pretreatment steps for liquid Substrates prior to Anaerobic Digestion.

At a glance

  • Project leader : Stefan Huber, Florian Rüsch
  • Co-project leader : Prof. Dr. Urs Baier
  • Deputy of project leader : Dr. Hans-Joachim Nägele
  • Project team : Wolfgang Merkle, Michèle Nathalie Senn, Klaus Wittwer
  • Project budget : CHF 148'000
  • Project status : completed
  • Funding partner : Federal government (Bundesamt für Energie BFE)
  • Contact person : Florian Rüsch


The HYKOM project demonstrates on a technical scale in the biogas plant of Klaus and Urs Wittwer the energetically and microbiologically optimized combination of hygienization, hydrolysis and anaerobic biogas production in the agricultural co-fermentation plant for liquid substrates. In a primary thermal treatment at 70 °C, hygienization, homogenization and thermal co-digestion are carried out. In a secondary anaerobic hydrolysis stage, the speed-limiting step of anaerobic degradation is carried out under the best possible conditions. The hydrolysis is operated continuously at a defined hydraulic retention time. The decoupling of "hygienization - hydrolysis - biogas production" stabilizes the plant operation and increases the substrate-specific biogas yield for certain substrates.