The role of biochar to enhance anaerobic digestion: A review

Shuai Tang, Zixin Wang, Zhidan Liu, Yuanhui Zhang, Buchun Si

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Biochar, one of the products of thermochemical conversion of biomass, possesses specific physiochemical properties such as conductivity, pore adsorption, surface functional groups, and cation exchange capacity. Anaerobic digestion (AD) as a classical bio-wastes conversion technology, suffers from inhibitions, process instability, and methanogenic inefficiency which limit its efficiency. With the advantages of pH buffering, functional microbes enrichment, inhibitors alleviating, and direct interspecies electron transfer (DIET) accelerating, biochar suggests a promising application as additives for AD. Herein, this paper reviewed the noting physicochemical properties of biochar, and discussed its roles and related mechanisms in AD. Further, this paper highlighted the advantages and drawbacks, and pointed out the corresponding challenges and prospects for future research and application of biochar amending AD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1033-1052
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Renewable Materials
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2020


  • Anaerobic digestion
  • Biochar
  • Mechanisms
  • Methane production
  • Physiochemical properties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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