The principles of composting and a description of the process technology are presented in Section 7.43 for sludge composting. While the fundamentals of sludge composting are applicable to MSW composting, several significant differences exist. The major difference involves preprocessing when MSW is composted. As shown in Figure
10.14.1, receiving, the removal of recoverable material, size reduction, and the adjustment of waste properties (e.g., the C:N ratio and the addition of moisture and nutrients) are essential steps in preparing MSW for composting. Obviously, different preprocessing strategies are needed for source-separated organic MSW and yard waste. Also, the degree of preprocessing depends on the type of composting process used and the specifications for the final compost product (Tchobanoglous, Theissen, and Vigil 1993).
MSW composting employs the same techniques as sludge composting: windrow, aerated static pile, and in-vessel systems. Tchobanoglous, Theissen, and Vigil (1993)
note that over the past fifty years, more than fifty types of proprietary commercial systems have been developed and applied worldwide. In general, they are variations of these three basic techniques.
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