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Biomass transformation into biogas is a potential solution to the pressing problems of a decrease in mineral oil resources, increase in energy demand,  and the need to improve organic waste processing towards a sustainable scenario for waste management all over the world. 
Additionally, increased biogas production efficiency will favour the implantation of tailored-size reactors fed with local biomass in isolated areas. 
Recent world events as well as the launch of the REPowerEU Plan, by the European Union, only accelerate the need for energy savings, diversification of energy supplies, and accelerated roll-out of renewable energy to replace fossil fuels in homes, industry and power generation.
The process, methanogenesis (biomethanation), is performed by the methanogen microorganism Archaea, which has an important role in the carbon cycle, participating in the decay of organic matter in anaerobic ecosystems, such as sediments, marshes and sewage. Therefore, bacterial colony performance enhancement has been greatly explored,  including co-digestion and pre-treatments of the biomass, by selective hydrolysis, heating the waste,  or adding iron salts. 
It is already well known that trace elements are necessary for anaerobic digestion, and have been used in studies as additives at μM to mM concentrations,  however the results were disappointing and did not show long-term gains
With this in mind, BioGAS+ was designed to disperse and then progressively dissolve over an extended period of time to yield the dietary supply of essential minerals, including trace and ultratrace elements, for the microorganisms in the reactor.
When 100 ppm of BioGAS+ additive was introduced into an anaerobic waste treatment reactor, the biogas production per gram of organic matter increased by up to 180%, which approaches the theoretical limits of organic matter into biogas conversion (Figure 1) . The results presented correspond to the cumulative biogas production obtained.
The composition of the biogas produced at different time points was determined by gas chromatography.
Note that results show not only an enhancement of biogas production, but also that this is richer in methane (8% more CH4 respect controls in the final measure). The measured CH4 percentage in the biogas is 48% in the control experiments and 56% in the case of BioGAS+. This represents a total increase in methane production of 234%. The rest is majorly CO2 while there is less than 1% of other gases as H2S.
Figure 1. Biogas production boosted by the sustained release of trace element ions.
Biogas production of the anaerobic digestion processes using BioGAS+ (black line, solid circles), 10 mM TMAOH (black line, hollow circles) and control experiment is shown. Three replicate experiments were performed for each case.
It is worth noting that, in the anaerobic methanogenic conditions of the closed digester, addition of BioGAS+ gives rise to insoluble precipitates of ferric hydroxide that are reduced to Fe2+ which is soluble and therefore becomes bioavailable.
Experimental method (in brief)
Anaerobic assays were performed in 600 mL gas-tight reactors, equipped with a pressure transducer to monitor biogas production.  Each anaerobic reactor contained: 250 mL of bacterial inoculum from a local waste-management plant (Consorci per a la Defensa de la Conca del riu Besòs, Granollers, Spain), the sample (an ammonium salt as Tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAOH) 10 mM solution as control solvent or nanoparticle suspension), 1.7 g of cellulose, and water up to 500 mL. The pH value of each reactor was adjusted to 8 (if necessary) with citric acid, and nitrogen gas was used to purge oxygen from the system, prior to incubation at 37 Celsius for 60 days. The 60 day process took place in a closed reactor and it could not be interrupted, as every time that the reactor is opened this allows oxygen to get in, killing a fraction of the bacterial productive substrate.
Control experiments with 10 mM of TMAOH showed no biogas production enhancement (Figure 1).
If we compare the biogas production profiles in the presence and absence of BioGAS+ (Figure 1), we observe that while in the latter case, the biogas production is virtually over at day 21, the production of biogas in the presence of BioGAS+ still runs up to day 40, where all of the organic substrate is consumed.
As at this point there is still a significant amount of remaining BioGAS+ in the reactor; this indicates that biogas production could be further increased with the same BioGAS+ if more organic matter were supplied. It is also important to note that there is a delay in the increase of biogas production when the BioGAS+ are present.
Production of biogas by conversion of biomass is an important source of fuel that will help to overcome challenges of energy shortage. Addition of the BioGAS+ additive to an anaerobic bacterial reactor demonstrated a clear increase biogas production, without giving rise to toxicity and excess reactivity.
The original study, containing full details on the experimental method and additional information regarding results is available from the following source: Casals E, Barrena R, García A, González E, Delgado L, Busquets-Fité M, Font X, Arbiol J, Glatzel P, Kvashnina K, Sánchez A, Puntes V. Programmed iron oxide nanoparticles disintegration in anaerobic digesters boosts biogas production. Small. 2014 Jul 23;10(14):2801-8, 2741. doi: 10.1002/smll.201303703. Epub 2014 Apr 1. PMID: 24692328. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/smll.201303703
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