A number of approaches have been taken in attempting to evaluate the important factors which control the rate of methane fermentation in anaerobic digestion. The ultimate goal of the research has been to determine the chemical, physical, and biochemical requirements which will enable the methane fermentation to proceed at rates on the order of one magnitude greater that commonly observed in conventional anaerobic digestion. A considerably detailed study was conducted to assay the methane fermentation stimulation potential of six compounds which had shown promise in a previous study conducted by the principal investigator. Next, a series of studies was designed to evaluate the influence of many physical and chemical factors involved in digestion. Following this, the methane fermentation requirements for trace organics, such as vitamins and amino acids was studied. Combinations of individual amino acids and vitamins as well as mixtures, e.g. case in hydrolyzate (enzymatic), yeast extract, and fortified vitamin B complex, were assayed for their stimulation potential. The surface charge on the microorganisms was altered by inorganic and organic coagulating agents while observing the acetate utilization rate.