vDual Chamber and Multicathode Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell for Salt Treatment in Cathode Chamber

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The world fresh water resources are limited because of increased industrial activities and population growth. The existing water supply can be supplemented with recycling of waste waters. But the technologies in use today for desalination of waste waters are energy and cost intensive technologies like thermal desalination or reverse osmosis. Bio-electrochemical systems reduce the cost and energy requirement must be further developed for desalination of wastewaters. In this study, 24-hour desalination of 20 g/L, 35 g/L and 60 g/L initial salt solutions were compared in a dual chamber microbial fuel cell with sodium ion as the electron acceptor. Also, electrical resistivity characteristics of sodium chloride solution and biosurfactant production were measured and quantified. The desalination rates achieved varied from 0.17 g/L/h to 0.20 g/L/h. Also, biosurfactant production in the anode chamber was influenced by the salt concentration in the cathode chamber. When the bridge between the anode and cathode chamber was changed from commercial cation exchange membrane to polyacrylamide gel, the desalination rate achieved for 35 g/L initial salt solution was 0.21 g/L/h. In the multiple cathode chamber microbial fuel cell, 35 g/L sodium chloride solution was tested, the average desalination achieved in each cathode chamber was 0.24 g/L/h while the total desalination rate achieved 0.97 g/L/h in 24 hours of operation. Hence, it was determined that salt water desalination was enhanced in multiple cathode chamber microbial fuel cell compared to dual chamber microbial fuel cell.

Microbial fuel cell, Desalination, Dual-chamber, Multi cathode microbial fuel cell