Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry

, Volume 135, Issue 3, pp 1667–1675 | Cite as

Ternary nanotube α-MnO2/GO/AC as an excellent alternative composite modifier for cathode electrode of microbial fuel cell

  • Arezu Tofighi
  • Mostafa RahimnejadEmail author
  • Mohsen Ghorbani


Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) are known as innovative alternatives to non-renewable energy by providing significant opportunities to convert chemical energy of organic or inorganic matters into electricity. Although they are capable of operating on diverse types of carbohydrates, they are able to function on complex substrates. However, low power density is one of their most challenging drawbacks. Using various types of catalytic materials is a typical method to overcome low performance of MFC. Mixture of graphene oxide (GO) and α-manganese dioxide nanotubes (α-MnO2) was applied as a cathode catalyst. Oxygen reduction reaction and MFC’s output power were enhanced by constructing nanocomposite with high catalytic activity mixed with simple and cost-effective activated carbon (AC), which was 280-fold of the bare electrode. Moreover, MFC’s output was compared by applying ternary nanotube α-MnO2/GO/AC catalyst with 5, 10, 15 and 20% of GO. Consequently, the composite with 10% GO achieved 148.4 mW m−2 maximum power density which indicated the best performance among other amounts of GO.


Ternary nanotube α-MnO2/GO/AC Cathode catalyst Oxygen reduction reaction Microbial fuel cells Power density 



The authors would like to appreciate Biofuel & Renewable Energy Research Center at BNUT for the facilities provided, Danesh Gostar Hamgam ba Sanat Company for fabricating MFC setup and data logger and also Dr. Masoomeh Pourali, Mehrdad Mashkour, Khashayar Sabbagh, Hoda Ezoji and Marjan Fallah who helped the authors finish this research.


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arezu Tofighi
    • 1
  • Mostafa Rahimnejad
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mohsen Ghorbani
    • 1
  1. 1.Biofuel and Renewable Energy Research Center, Chemical Engineering DepartmentBabol Noshirvani University of TechnologyBabolIran

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