Energy recovery from energy rich vegetable products with microbial fuel cells
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Two types of rapidly biodegradable vegetable products (the liquid fraction of clover and the glycerol-containing sidestream from biodiesel production) were selected for anodic oxidation in microbial fuel cells (MFC) equipped with a biocathode. As benchmark references, five abundant amino-acids in plant sap (l-glutamine, l-glutamic acid, l-asparagine, l-aspartic acid and l-alanine) were tested separately. Their performance was in the same order of magnitude of clover sap oxidation (145–225 A m−3 MFC; 39–95 W m−3 MFC). Glycerol oxidation resulted in competitive current and power outputs (111 A m−3 MFC; 23 W m−3 MFC).
KeywordsBio-electrochemical systems Bioenergy Biological cathode Glycerol Vegetable substrate
The useful comments of Peter Aelterman, Hai The Pham and Tuba Hande Ergüder are kindly acknowledged. This research was funded by a Ph.D grant (IWT Grant 53305) of the Institute for the Promotion of Innovation through Science and Technology in Flanders (IWT-Vlaanderen).
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