A Bipolar Membrane Combined with Ferric Iron Reduction as an Efficient Cathode System in Microbial Fuel Cells

ter Heijne, Annemiek, Hamelers, Hubertus V. M., de Wilde, Vinnie, Rozendal, Rene A. and Buisman, Cees J. N. (2006) A Bipolar Membrane Combined with Ferric Iron Reduction as an Efficient Cathode System in Microbial Fuel Cells. Environmental Science & Technology, 40 17: 5200-5205.


Author ter Heijne, Annemiek
Hamelers, Hubertus V. M.
de Wilde, Vinnie
Rozendal, Rene A.
Buisman, Cees J. N.
Title A Bipolar Membrane Combined with Ferric Iron Reduction as an Efficient Cathode System in Microbial Fuel Cells
Journal name Environmental Science & Technology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0013-936X
Publication date 2006-09-01
Year available 2006
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1021/es0608545
Volume 40
Issue 17
Start page 5200
End page 5205
Total pages 5
Place of publication Washington
Publisher American Chemical Society
Collection year 2006
Language eng
Subject 09 Engineering
10 Technology
Abstract There is a need for alternative catalysts for oxygen reduction in the cathodic compartment of a microbial fuel cell (MFC). In this study, we show that a bipolar membrane combined with ferric iron reduction on a graphite electrode is an efficient cathode system in MFCs. A flat plate MFC with graphite felt electrodes, a volume of 1.2 L and a projected surface area of 290 cm2 was operated in continuous mode. Ferric iron was reduced to ferrous iron in the cathodic compartment according to Fe3+ + e- → Fe2+ (E0 = +0.77 V vs NHE, normal hydrogen electrode). This reversible electron transfer reaction considerably reduced the cathode overpotential. The low catholyte pH required to keep ferric iron soluble was maintained by using a bipolar membrane instead of the commonly used cation exchange membrane. For the MFC with cathodic ferric iron reduction, the maximum power density was 0.86 W/m2 at a current density of 4.5 A/m2. The Coulombic efficiency and energy recovery were 80−95% and 18−29% respectively.
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
Advanced Water Management Centre Publications
 
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