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Dynamic electrical reconfiguration for improved capacitor charging in microbial fuel cell stacks

Papaharalabos, George; Greenman, John; Stinchcombe, Andrew; Horsfield, Ian; Melhuish, Chris; Ieropoulos, Ioannis

Authors

George Papaharalabos george.papaharalabos@uwe.ac.uk

Andrew Stinchcombe andrew2.stinchcombe@uwe.ac.uk

Ian Horsfield ian2.horsfield@uwe.ac.uk

Chris Melhuish Chris.Melhuish@uwe.ac.uk
AVC - Advanced Technologies & Professor of Robotics & Autonomous Systems



Abstract

A microbial fuel cell (MFC) is a bioelectrochemical device that uses anaerobic bacteria to convert chemical energy locked in biomass into small amounts of electricity. One viable way of increasing energy extraction is by stacking multiple MFC units and exploiting the available electrical configurations for increasing the current or stepping up the voltage. The present study illustrates how a real-time electrical reconfiguration of MFCs in a stack, halves the time required to charge a capacitor (load) and achieves 35% higher current generation compared to a fixed electrical configuration. This is accomplished by progressively switching in-parallel elements to in-series units in the stack, thus maintaining an optimum potential difference between the stack and the capacitor, which in turn allows for a higher energy transfer. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Dec 25, 2014
Journal Journal of Power Sources
Print ISSN 0378-7753
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 272
Pages 34-38
APA6 Citation Papaharalabos, G., Greenman, J., Stinchcombe, A., Horsfield, I., Melhuish, C., & Ieropoulos, I. (2014). Dynamic electrical reconfiguration for improved capacitor charging in microbial fuel cell stacks. Journal of Power Sources, 272, 34-38. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpowsour.2014.07.187
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpowsour.2014.07.187
Keywords MFC stack, capacitor charging, dynamic electrical reconfiguration, switch box, passive harvesting
Publisher URL http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpowsour.2014.07.187
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