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Forskningsartikel2009Vetenskapligt granskad

Activity and composition of ammonia oxidizing bacterial communities and emission dynamics of NH3 and N2O in a compost reactor treating organic household waste

Jarvis, A.; Sundberg, C.; Milenkovski, S.; Pell, M.; Smars, S.; Lindgren, P. -E.; Hallin, S.


To monitor emissions of NH3 and N2O during composting and link these to ammonia oxidation rates and the community structure of ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB).A laboratory-scale compost reactor treating organic household waste was run for 2 months. NH3 emissions peaked when pH started to increase. Small amounts of N2O and CH4 were also produced. In total, 16% and less than 1% of the initial N was lost as NH3-N and N2O-N respectively. The potential ammonia oxidation rate, determined by a chlorate inhibition assay, increased fourfold during the first 9 days and then remained high. Initially, both Nitrosospira and Nitrosomonas populations were detected using DGGE analysis of AOB specific 16S rRNA fragments. Only Nitrosomonas europaea was detected under thermophilic conditions, but Nitrosospira populations re-established during the cooling phase.Thermophilic conditions favoured high potential ammonia oxidation rates, suggesting that ammonia oxidation contributed to reduced NH3 emissions. Small but significant amounts of N2O were emitted during the thermophilic phase. The significance of different AOBs detected in the compost for ammonia oxidation is not clear.This study shows that ammonia oxidation occurs at high temperature composting and therefore most likely reduces NH3 emissions.


ammonia; ammonia oxidation rate; ammonia oxidizing bacteria; compost; methane; nitrification; nitrous oxide

Publicerad i

Journal of Applied Microbiology
2009, Volym: 106, nummer: 5, sidor: 1502-1511