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E-Journal of Chemistry
Volume 7 (2010), Issue 1, Pages 93-100

Developing Optimal Combination of Bulking Agents in an In-Vessel Composting of Vegetable Waste

C. C. Monson and A. Murugappan

Department of Civil Engineering, Annamalai University, Annamalainagar, Tamilnadu, India

Received 16 May 2009; Revised 19 July 2009; Accepted 26 August 2009

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The objective of the study is to determine the optimum combination of feed stock components for composting the organic solid waste, a prerequisite for effective microbial degradation and for obtaining quality compost. Combination of dry leaves with locally available bulking agents like sawdust, wood shavings, paddy straw, sugarcane bagasse and rice husk are composted along with vegetable waste in a laboratory scale reactor for the study. The central core of composting process is replicated in controlled conditions in the in-vessel by keeping initial feed stock C/N ratio fixed between 30 and 35. The study is monitored for 14 days for the variations in temperature, pH, moisture and macronutrients C and N of the compost. It is found that composting vegetable waste with the combination of paddy straw and dry leaves provided best results of C/N ratio of 17.58 confirming that, if right feedstock components are provided, an effective environment for the growth of microorganisms is achieved to accelerate the process to produce a resultant C/N ratio acceptable to be used as compost.