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Research article2012Peer reviewed

Is biodegradable waste a porous environment? A review

Sundberg, Cecilia; Agostini, Francesco; Navia, Rodrigo


This article presents a review of the porous physical characteristics, phenomena and simulation models so far investigated and applied in the management of biodegradable wastes (BW), summarising the main properties of porous media and the dynamics of fluids within its voids. The aim is to highlight how the description of biodegradable wastes as porous media and the use of porous media models can facilitate the development of new sustainable and affordable technologies for BW recycling. However, it is pointed out how the lack of physical experimental data and of tailored modelling tools has so far hampered the use of this approach. Therefore, it is suggested that a simpler way to design and implement modelling tools simulating BW treatment technologies is by modifying available models designed originally for other porous media, such as soil and rock.


Municipal solid waste; human and animal excreta; nutrient recycling; computational fluid dynamic; heat and mass transfer; composting; landfills

Published in

Waste Management and Research
2012, Volume: 30, number: 10, pages: 1001-1015

      SLU Authors

    • Sustainable Development Goals

      SDG6 Clean water and sanitation
      SDG12 Responsible consumption and production

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Other Environmental Engineering

      Publication identifier


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