Enhanced nitrogen removal in single-chamber microbial fuel cells with increased gas diffusion areas
KAUST Grant NumberKUS-I1-003-13
Online Publication Date2012-11-23
Print Publication Date2013-03
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/10754/598183
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AbstractSingle-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs) with nitrifiers pre-enriched at the air cathodes have previously been demonstrated as a passive strategy for integrating nitrogen removal into current-generating bioelectrochemical systems. To further define system design parameters for this strategy, we investigated in this study the effects of oxygen diffusion area and COD/N ratio in continuous-flow reactors. Doubling the gas diffusion area by adding an additional air cathode or a diffusion cloth significantly increased the ammonia and COD removal rates (by up to 115% and 39%), ammonia removal efficiency (by up to 134%), the cell voltage and cathode potentials, and the power densities (by a factor of approximately 2). When the COD/N ratio was lowered from 13 to 3, we found up to 244% higher ammonia removal rate but at least 19% lower ammonia removal efficiency. An increase of COD removal rate by up to 27% was also found when the COD/N ratio was lowered from 11 to 3. The Coulombic efficiency was not affected by the additional air cathode, but decreased by an average of 11% with the addition of a diffusion cloth. Ammonia removal by assimilation was also estimated to understand the ammonia removal mechanism in these systems. These results showed that the doubling of gas diffusion area enhanced N and COD removal rates without compromising electrochemical performance. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
CitationYan H, Regan JM (2012) Enhanced nitrogen removal in single-chamber microbial fuel cells with increased gas diffusion areas. Biotechnology and Bioengineering 110: 785–791. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/bit.24769.
SponsorsContract grant sponsor: King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)Contract grant number: KUS-I1-003-13
JournalBiotechnology and Bioengineering
CollectionsPublications Acknowledging KAUST Support
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