High hydrogen production rate of microbial electrolysis cell (MEC) with reduced electrode spacing

Shaoan Cheng, Bruce E. Logan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

106 Scopus citations

Abstract

Practical applications of microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) require high hydrogen production rates and a compact reactor. These goals can be achieved by reducing electrode spacing but high surface area anodes are needed. The brush anode MEC with electrode spacing of 2cm had a higher hydrogen production rate and energy efficiency than an MEC with a flat cathode and a 1-cm electrode spacing. The maximum hydrogen production rate with a 2cm electrode spacing was 17.8m3/m3d at an applied voltage of Eap=1V. Reducing electrode spacing increased hydrogen production rates at the lower applied voltages, but not at the higher (>0.6V) applied voltages. These results demonstrate that reducing electrode spacing can increase hydrogen production rate, but that the closest electrode spacing do not necessarily produce the highest possible hydrogen production rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3571-3574
Number of pages4
JournalBioresource technology
Volume102
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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

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