Integration of a microbial fuel cell with activated sludge process for energy-saving wastewater treatment: Taking a sequencing batch reactor as an example

Authors

  • Xian-Wei Liu,

    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Yong-Peng Wang,

    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Yu-Xi Huang,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Xue-Fei Sun,

    1. School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Shandong University, Jinan, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Guo-Ping Sheng,

    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    2. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Raymond J. Zeng,

    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    2. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Feng Li,

    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Fang Dong,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Shu-Guang Wang,

    1. School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Shandong University, Jinan, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Zhong-Hua Tong,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Han-Qing Yu

    Corresponding author
    1. School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592
    2. Department of Chemistry, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei, China
    • School of Earth and Space Sciences, University of Science & Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China; telephone: 86-551-3607592; fax: 86-551-3601592.
    Search for more papers by this author

  • Xian-Wei Liu and Yong-Peng Wang contributed equally to this work.

Abstract

In the research and application of microbial fuel cell (MFC), how to incorporate MFCs into current wastewater infrastructure is an importance issue. Here, we report a novel strategy of integrating an MFC into a sequencing batch reactor (SBR) to test the energy production and the chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal. The membrane-less biocathode MFC is integrated with the SBR to recover energy from the aeration in the form of electricity and thus reduce the SBR operation costs. In a lab-scale integrated SBR-MFC system, the maximum power production of the MFC was 2.34 W/m3 for one typical cycle and the current density reached up to 14 A/m3. As a result, the MFC contributed to the 18.7% COD consumption of the integrated system and also recovered energy from the aeration tank with a volume fraction of only 12% of the SBR. Our strategy provides a feasible and effective energy-saving and -recovering solution to upgrade the existing activated sludge processes. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2011; 108:1260–1267. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Ancillary