Under the terms of anaerobic fermentation, anaerobic digestion or anaerobic digestion, the transformation of organic compounds into methane and carbon dioxide under the action of microorganisms.
This transformation of organic matter into biogas is carried out by complex bacterial populations under very specific environmental conditions (strictly anaerobic environment, with a Red-Ox potential of around 250 mV, pH close to neutrality).
Anaerobic fermentation is mainly applied to the treatment of activated sludge from aerobic treatment of urban wastewater (digestion of urban wastewater sludge) and treatment of industrial wastewater containing high concentrations of easily biodegradable compounds (agro-food industries). .
In a properly functioning fermenter, the rate of removal of COD (Chemical Oxygen Demand) can reach 80% provided that the residence time is sufficient because the methanogenic bacteria work slowly.