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Biosens Bioelectron. 2008 Apr 15;23(9):1326-32. doi: 10.1016/j.bios.2007.11.016. Epub 2007 Dec 3.

Biochemical evaluation of bioelectricity production process from anaerobic wastewater treatment in a single chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC) employing glass wool membrane.

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Bioengineering and Environmental Centre, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad 500007, India.


Biochemical functioning of single chambered microbial fuel cell (MFC) using glass wool as proton exchange membrane (PEM) operated with selectively enriched acidogenic mixed culture was evaluated in terms of bioelectricity production and wastewater treatment. Performance of MFC was studied at two different organic/substrate loading rates (OLR) (2.64 and 3.54 kg COD/m(3)) and operating pH 6 and 7 using non-coated plain graphite electrodes (mediatorless anode; air cathode). Applied OLR in association with operating pH showed marked influence on the power output and substrate degradation efficiency. Higher current density was observed at acidophilic conditions [pH 6; 98.13 mA/m(2) (2.64 kg COD/m(3)-day; 100 Omega) and 111.29 mA/m(2) (3.54 kg COD/m(3)-day; 100 Omega)] rather than neutral conditions [pH 7; 100.52 mA/m(2) (2.64 kg COD/m(3)-day; 100 Omega) and 98.13 mA/m(2) (3.54 kg COD/m(3)-day; 100 Omega)]. On the contrary, effective substrate degradation was observed at neutral pH. MFC performance was evaluated employing polarization curve, impedance analysis, cell potential, Coulombic efficiency and bioprocess monitoring. Sustainable power yield was calculated at stable cell potential.

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