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Biotechnology, Anaerobic Fermentation

Prof. Uri Marchaim

Contact Prof. Uri Marchaim

The Anaerobic Fermentation group is dealing with breaking down organic wastes to produce Methane (CH4) and useful residual materials. The laboratory is dealing with the increasing concern over environmental degradation and the danger of non-sustainable development as well as the need for alternative (“green”) energy from renewable resources, which has enhanced the role of environmental management of ecosystems. The use of Biogas technology of solid and liquid manure from the cow barn was demonstrated as a means of reducing environmental hazards, as well as other organic wastes such as poultry manure, instant coffee waste, cotton stalks, olive oil mills’ and wineries’ wastewater, etc.
Today, anaerobic digestion is widely accepted as a sound technology for many waste treatment applications, and novel reactor designs are being applied on a commercial scale. In spite of this acceptance, advances are still being made, and developments in this department are concentrating on the uses of the digested slurry. New and already developed approaches and processes for upgrading the quality and use of the effluent from anaerobic digestion are the reason for more economical uses of bioenergy processes.
Biogas production combines the short-term economic needs of our communities with conservation and the end of ecological degradation.
Prof. Marchaim initiated and became Director (1977) of the National Project “NEFAH - Utilization of Agricultural Wastes” and was responsible for building 3 full scale Biogas plants in Israel and plants in Italy and Yugoslavia, as well as being a consultant to the World Bank. We are involved now in implementing innovation in several industries in the Galilee dealing with Water-Technology as part of EU projects.



Ph.D. 1972, Faculty of Agriculture, Agricultural Biochemistry, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
M.Sc. 1966, Faculty of Biochemistry, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Academic and research positions
1998 Professor at the Tel-Hai Academic College, Israel.
1997 Appointed as an Adjunct Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, USA.
1991: Received status of Research Scientist A (research equivalent to Professor).
1984- MIGAL – Galilee Technology Center, Kiryat-Shmona, Israel. Head of the Biotechnological Department, Anaerobic fermentation.
1983: Sabbatical at Battelle's Columbus Laboratories, Ohio, USA as a sabbatical, doing research on control systems for anaerobic digestion.
1979: Consultant to the World Bank, TWT Dept. on a project on resource recovery in India. Visited India several times; and principal investigator of a project in this field for India.
1975-1983: Project Director of the National Project "NEFAH" "Utilization of Agricultural Wastes" at the R&D Institute of the Kibbutz Industries Assoc., Tel Aviv, Israel.
1974-1975: Appointed as Research Associate at the Kinneret Limnological Lab., Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research Ltd, Tiberias, Israel.
1972-1974: Appointed as Research Associate at the Rockefeller University, New York, N.Y., carrying out research on biochemistry of tumor cells.

Honors and awards
1993: Received the “Rothschild Price for Education” in the Israeli Parliament, Jerusalem.

Other Activity and Service
Since 2008: Academic Secretary of the Association “Campus for Medicine and Research in the Galilee”.
Since 2000: Serving as director in several entities, including the Regional Water and Sewage Cooperation.


Marchaim, U. and Criden, J. 1983. "Method and Means for the Anaerobic fermentation of Agricultural Waste". Date of application 10.6.1980. Date of Grant of Patent 16.9.83. Israeli Patent No. 60284 Assigned to Kibbutz Industries Association, Israel.

Selected Publications

Bioconversion of poultry and fish waste by Lucilia Sericata and Sarcophage Carnaria larvae

Asian J. of Water Environment and Pollution 2011 Volume 8 Pages 69-75 Braverman Y., Marchaim, U., Glatman L., Drabkin V., Chizov-Ginzburg A., Mumcuoglu K. and Gelman A.

Reducing waste contamination from animal processing plants by anaerobic thermophilic fermentation and via flesh fly digestion

Applied Biochemistry & Biotechnology 2002 Marchaim U., Gelman A., and Braverman Y.

Biogas Technology as an Environmental Solution to Pollution

REUR Technical Series 33, Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations 1994 Uri Marchaim and George Ney

Biogas Processes for Sustainable Development

FAO AGRICULTURAL SERVICES BULLETIN No 95. Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Rome 1992 Issue 95 Uri Marchaim

High-school student research at MIGAL Science Institute in Israel

Journal of Biological Education Volume 35 Pages 178-182 Marchaim U.


Post-graduate and post-doctoral research training


Laboratories and research projects


Business opportunities and technology transfer