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Scalability of self-stratifying microbial fuel cell: Towards height miniaturisation

Walter, Xavier Alexis; Santoro, Carlo; Greenman, John; Ieropoulos, Ioannis A.


Carlo Santoro

John Greenman


© 2019 The Authors The scalability of bioelectrochemical systems is a key parameter for their practical implementation in the real-world. Up until now, only urine-fed self-stratifying microbial fuel cells (SSM-MFCs) have been shown to be scalable in width and length with limited power density losses. For practical reasons, the present work focuses on the scalability of SSM-MFCs in the one dimension that has not yet been investigated, namely height. Three different height conditions were considered (1 cm, 2 cm and 3 cm tall electrodes). The normalised power density of the 2 cm and 3 cm conditions were similar either during the durability test under a hydraulic retention time of ≈39 h (i.e. 15.74 ± 0.99 μ −3 ) and during the polarisation experiments (i.e. 27.79 ± 0.92 μ −3 ). Conversely, the 1 cm condition had lower power densities of 11.23 ± 0.07 μ −3 and 17.73 ± 3.94 μ −3 both during the durability test and the polarisation experiment, respectively. These results confirm that SSM-MFCs can be scaled in all 3 dimensions with minimal power density losses, with a minimum height threshold for the electrode comprised between 1 cm and 2 cm.


Walter, X. A., Santoro, C., Greenman, J., & Ieropoulos, I. A. (2019). Scalability of self-stratifying microbial fuel cell: Towards height miniaturisation. Bioelectrochemistry, 127, 68-75.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 7, 2019
Online Publication Date Jan 9, 2019
Publication Date Jun 1, 2019
Deposit Date Jan 9, 2019
Publicly Available Date Jan 9, 2019
Journal Bioelectrochemistry
Print ISSN 1567-5394
Electronic ISSN 1878-562X
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 127
Pages 68-75
Keywords microbial fuel cell, urine treatment, scaling, self-stratification, power generation
Public URL
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