Plasma treatment of electrodes significantly enhances the development of anodic electrochemically active biofilms

Flexer, Victoria, Marque, Marina, Donose, Bogdan C., Virdis, Benardino and Keller, Jurg (2013) Plasma treatment of electrodes significantly enhances the development of anodic electrochemically active biofilms. Electrochimica Acta, 108 566-574. doi:10.1016/j.electacta.2013.06.145


Author Flexer, Victoria
Marque, Marina
Donose, Bogdan C.
Virdis, Benardino
Keller, Jurg
Title Plasma treatment of electrodes significantly enhances the development of anodic electrochemically active biofilms
Journal name Electrochimica Acta   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0013-4686
1873-3859
Publication date 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.electacta.2013.06.145
Volume 108
Start page 566
End page 574
Total pages 9
Place of publication Kidlington, Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Abstract Surface modifications of electrode materials are important for improved performance of microbial bio-electrochemical systems. Here, we studied the effect of pre-treating both glassy carbon and graphite felt electrodes with either an oxygen or a nitrogen plasma before reactor inoculation with a mixed microbial consortia. The plasma produces chemical modifications at the electrode surface level. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and water contact angle analysis showed that the plasma removes surface contamination, produces ion implantation and renders the hydrophobic surfaces highly hydrophilic. Plasma pre-treatment considerably accelerated the generation of a bio-electrochemical anodic current after inoculation. Nitrogen plasma pre-treatment yielded the best performance, followed closely by oxygen plasma. Plasma pre-treated electrodes reached a plateau of maximum current density twice as fast as untreated electrodes. Analysis of the current development profiles suggests that the plasma pre-treatment is neither producing a preferential attachment of certain types of bacteria over others nor accelerating the extracellular electron transfer rate. The results indicate that the plasma treatment considerably enhances the initial cell adhesion, which results in subsequently faster biofilm development. Plasma pre-treatment of electrodes is an inexpensive, fast, safe and straightforward technique to achieve more rapid start-up of bio-electrochemical processes.
Keyword Microbial bio-electrochemical systems
Microbial fuel cells
Plasma
Electrochemically active biofilm
Electrode surface modification
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
Advanced Water Management Centre Publications
 
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Created: Sun, 11 Aug 2013, 07:06:37 EST by Dr Bogdan Donose on behalf of Advanced Water Management Centre