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Title: A terrestrial microbial fuel cell setup and its experimental study

Authors: Daxing Zhang; Yubing Ge; Weidong Wang; Yongxian Guo

Addresses: School of Mechano-Electronic Engineering, Xidian University, No. 2 South TaiBai Road, Xi'an 710071, Shaanxi, China ' School of Mechano-Electronic Engineering, Xidian University, No. 2 South TaiBai Road, Xi'an 710071, Shaanxi, China ' School of Mechano-Electronic Engineering, Xidian University, No. 2 South TaiBai Road, Xi'an 710071, Shaanxi, China ' Institute of Engineering Thermophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 11 Beisihuanxi Road, Beijing 100190, China

Abstract: Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) can generate electric current while treating waste water. Therefore, MFCs are considered as one of the most promising alternative renewable energy sources, especially for remote monitoring applications. Aquatic microbial fuel cells (AMFCs) must be inoculated and work in water environment. Terrestrial microbial fuel cells (TMFCs) can overcome the shortcoming and extend the application fields of MFCs. A TMFC experimental setup is proposed and the performance of the proposed TMFC is tested. The open circuit voltage (OCV) of the proposed TMFC is about 0.75 V and the output power density is about 3 mW/m², which are normal values in previous researches of AMFCs. The relationship between environment temperature, soil water content and the output power density of the proposed TMFC are tested by experiments. Experiment results show that TMFCs are one of alternative power sources for small electronic devices.

Keywords: terrestrial MFCs; microbial fuel cells; TMFC; power generation performance; energy harvesting; wastewater treatment; renewable energy; remote monitoring; environment temperature; soil water content; output power density; small electronic devices.

DOI: 10.1504/IJAMECHS.2014.066924

International Journal of Advanced Mechatronic Systems, 2014 Vol.6 No.1, pp.19 - 23

Available online: 16 Jan 2015 *

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