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Hydrogen production in single-chamber microbial electrolysis cells using Ponceau S dye


In this study, Ponceau S dye, which is one of the hazardous dyes found in industrial wastewater, was examined for hydrogen production in single chamber-free membrane-free microbial electrolysis cells at different concentrations (10–40 mg L−1). A gas content analysis (hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and methane) was measured daily using gas chromatography to determine the effects of the Ponceau S on hydrogen production levels. Hydrogen was successfully produced in the presence of Ponceau S dye, but the gas production levels were affected by the concentrations of Ponceau S. The maximum hydrogen production was measured as 18 mL at a concentration level of 20 mg L−1. Decolorization ratios of Ponceau S were in the range of 85–100%. Hydrogen production rates increased in the presence of Ponceau S (20 mg L−1); however, yield (%) of the production decreased when compared to the control group. The percentage of COD removal was 94.78% in the presence of 40 mg L−1 of Ponceau S. In conclusion, hydrogen can be generated using wastewaters contaminated with azo dyes such as Ponceau S, and decolorization of the dye can be achieved, simultaneously.

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All the data used in the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.


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RC and DA performed the investigations of the study. RC and TC analyzed the results and wrote the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Tunc Catal.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

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Cebecioglu, R., Akagunduz, D. & Catal, T. Hydrogen production in single-chamber microbial electrolysis cells using Ponceau S dye. 3 Biotech 11, 27 (2021).

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  • Azo dyes
  • Electricity
  • Hydrogen
  • Microbial electrolysis cell
  • Ponceau S
  • Wastewater