Three Methods Of Composting For Organic Soil



To be able to produce a top-rated organic soil, you need to know the importance and the process of composting. No, this isn’t the way you compost at home with your house garbage and grass trimmings. The methods on composting for organic soil is a regulated process by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The end product of composting in this way is a marketable Class A, humus-like material that has no detectable levels of pathogen.

This Class A, humus-like material is the organic soil that can be used as soil conditioner and fertilizer on gardens, food and feed crops, and rangelands. The compost is composed of large quantity of nutrients needed by the soil to improve soil texture and even soil drainage, making it a valuable asset to any agricultural farm. In the last decades that biosolids management has been given attention by the US EPA, the general public has been accepting and welcoming of it. In fact, biosolids from compost can compete with other bagged materials (fertilizers) used by farmers, landscapers, ranchers, and homeowners.

There are at least four methods on how to compost, but the three listed here are the most common ways used. The fourth method, static pile, is not recommended for composting wastewater solids because of the lack of operational control.

Aerated Static Pile

A bed of pipes runs below a 4×8 feet of container. In these long pipes is a mixture of dewatered cake that has been mechanically mixed with a bulking agent and stacked into the pipes. Through these pipes, air is transferred to the composting material. After a certain period of active composting, the pile will start to cool down and will then be moved to a curing pile. In this method, the bulking agent can be screened before or after curing, so that it can be reused for the next pile.

Windrow

Same with Aerated Static Pile, the Windrow method starts with the mixing of dewatered wastewater solids with a bulking agent. This mixture is then piled in long rows. The need to supply air will be sourced through the mechanical turning of the mixture. This will also be beneficial to move the outer surface of the material inward, so they can be subjected to higher temperatures deep in the mixture. There is a number of device used to mechanically turn the mixture such as drums and belts and self-propelled models. After active composting, the material is moved into curing piles.

In-Vessel

The mixture of dewatered wastewater material and bulking agent is put into a silo, a tunnel, a channel, or a vessel. The mixture will need to be aerated, mixed, and moved through the vessel to the discharge point. To do this, augers, conveyors, rams, and other devices are used. Air comes from blowing into the mixture. Same with Aerated Static Pile and Windrow methods, the mixture would need to move into a curing pile after active compost.

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