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Comparative Electricity Generation by Two Locally Produced Corncob Pyrochar Electrodes and Graphite using Microbial Fuel Cell Technology
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  • Musa Bishir,
  • Marium Tariq,
  • Dominik Wüst,
  • Lena Schleicher,
  • Julia Steuber,
  • Andrea Kruse
Musa Bishir
University of Hohenheim Faculty of Agricultural Sciences
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Marium Tariq
University of Hohenheim
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Dominik Wüst
University of Hohenheim
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Lena Schleicher
University of Hohenheim
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Julia Steuber
University of Hohenheim
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Andrea Kruse
University of Hohenheim Faculty of Agricultural Sciences
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Abstract

Microbial fuel cell (MFC) is an evolving technology for anaerobic bioenergy generation using electrodes and organic wastewater as a feedstock for catabolic activities of electrogenic bacteria and subsequent electricity generation. The search for suitable inexpensive electrode materials remains the leading interest of researchers in this field. The work here focused on comparative bioelectricity generation from HTC process water (pH = 5.99) and treated–biogas digestate (pH = 7.97) using locally developed corncob pyrochar electrodes and graphite in dual-chambered microbial fuel cells (MFC). The electrodes used in this study were graphite rod (non-porous and very low surface area), KOH–activated corncob pyrochar (KAC) of BET surface area, 1626 m2 g-1 and steam activated corncob pyrochar (SAC) with 485.8 m2 g-1. The highest power outputs achieved were 323.8 µW and 316.8 µW from HTC process water with SAC and KAC electrodes respectively at an external load of 47 Ω. The initial COD (48780 mg L-1), DOC (4000 mg L-1), and TNb (5600 mg L-1) of the biogas digestate decreased significantly to 36405, 3610 and 4300 mg L-1 respectively in the MFC with KOH-activated corncob pyrochar electrodes. The MFC operated with KAC electrode and treated biogas digestate was the most efficient having Coulombic efficiency of 75 % in a comparatively shorter residence time of MFC operation than the MFC with SAC electrode which had a lower Coulombic efficiency of 64 %.

Peer review status:UNDER REVIEW

07 Jun 2021Submitted to Engineering Reports
17 Jun 2021Submission Checks Completed
17 Jun 2021Assigned to Editor
24 Jun 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned
25 Jul 2021Editorial Decision: Revise Major
05 Sep 20211st Revision Received
06 Sep 2021Submission Checks Completed
06 Sep 2021Assigned to Editor
08 Sep 2021Reviewer(s) Assigned