Journal of Applied Mathematics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 747410, 15 pages
Research Article

Inverse Estimation of Temperature Profiles in Landfills Using Heat Recovery Fluids Measurements

Department of Chemical and Process Engineering “G. B. Bonino”, University of Genova, Via Opera Pia 15, 16145 Genova, Italy

Received 8 December 2011; Accepted 4 March 2012

Academic Editor: Fu-Yun Zhao

Copyright © 2012 C. Solisio et al. 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.


In addition to leachate and gas emission analysis, temperature variations in municipal solid waste landfills are routinely monitored for safety and health reasons, such as the increased production of biogas or the danger of spontaneous combustion phenomena if the temperature exceeds 70–75°C. The increasing constraints on greenhouse gas emissions and the convenience of fuel and heat recovery have helped develop a global approach to landfills' operation and maintenance, generally referred to as bioreactor landfill management. The heat recovery piping we are presently designing can be a significant part of this approach. The heat gained by a fluid circulated in a closed network through the landfill is transferred to an external heat exchanger or used directly as warm water. Additionally, it can help reduce landfill temperature levels and control biogas generation. Since the pipes diameter is large enough to allow for a radial temperature gradient, this information can be used for an inverse estimation of the temperature profile in the landfill which constitutes the boundary conditions of the resulting heat transfer problem. In this paper, we describe an algorithm for regularising the resulting ill-posed free boundary estimation problem using sampled data of the heat recovery fluid on exiting the landfill.