Module 1: Pre-Treatment
Size and shape --- Important in determining microbial activity and airflow within the compost pile:
- Shredding / grinding / mixing of the feedstock is preferable as a pretreatment step
- Smaller particle size will result in greater surface area and provide microbes with greater access to their substrate
- However, if particle size is too small, airflow within will be restricted (anaerobic conditions).
Porosity --- Aids in maintaining aerobic conditions, and increases airflow:
- Particles with uniform and smooth texture can settle and compact, preventing airflow as well as microbial access to substrate
- Preferable to include coarser material such as wood chips to increase the void fraction.