Influence of ionic conductivity in bioelectricity production from saline domestic sewage sludge in microbial fuel cells

Rengasamy Karthikeyan, Ammaiyappan Selvam, Ka Yu Cheng, Jonathan W C WONG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study aimed at manipulating ionic conductivity (EC) to harvest the maximum electrical energy from seawater-based domestic wastewater sewage sludge (SWS), unique to only a few cities, through microbial fuel cell (MFC). SWS has never been investigated as a MFC substrate before, and thus the influence of high in-situ EC on the energy recovery was unknown. In this study, the EC of the SWS was reduced through mixing it with fresh water-based domestic wastewater sewage sludge (FWS) or diluted 50% using deionized water while FWS and SWS were individually served as reference treatments. SWS:FWS mix (1:1) exhibited a maximum Coulombic efficiency of 28.6±0.5% at a COD removal of 59±3% while the peak power density was 20-fold higher than FWS. The improved performance was due to the lower ohmic internal resistance (36.8±4.2Ω) and optimal conductivity (12.8±0.2mScm-1). Therefore, dilution with FWS could enhance energy recovery from SWS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)845-852
Number of pages8
JournalBioresource Technology
Volume200
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal

User-Defined Keywords

  • Bioelectricity
  • Ionic conductivity
  • Microbial fuel cell
  • Power density
  • Saline sewage sludge

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