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Ceramic Microbial Fuel Cells Stack: Power generation in standard and supercapacitive mode

Santoro, Carlo; Flores-Cadengo, Cristina; Soavi, Francesca; Kodali, Mounika; Merino-Jimenez, Irene; Gajda, Iwona; Greenman, John; Ieropoulos, Ioannis; Atanassov, Plamen


Carlo Santoro

Cristina Flores-Cadengo

Francesca Soavi

Mounika Kodali

Irene Merino-Jimenez

Iwona Serruys
Senior Lecturer in Engineering Management

Plamen Atanassov


© 2018 The Author(s). In this work, a microbial fuel cell (MFC) stack containing 28 ceramic MFCs was tested in both standard and supercapacitive modes. The MFCs consisted of carbon veil anodes wrapped around the ceramic separator and air-breathing cathodes based on activated carbon catalyst pressed on a stainless steel mesh. The anodes and cathodes were connected in parallel. The electrolytes utilized had different solution conductivities ranging from 2.0 mScm-1 to 40.1 mScm-1, simulating diverse wastewaters. Polarization curves of MFCs showed a general enhancement in performance with the increase of the electrolyte solution conductivity. The maximum stationary power density was 3.2 mW (3.2 Wm-3) at 2.0 mScm-1 that increased to 10.6 mW (10.6 Wm-3) at the highest solution conductivity (40.1 mScm-1). For the first time, MFCs stack with 1 L operating volume was also tested in supercapacitive mode, where full galvanostatic discharges are presented. Also in the latter case, performance once again improved with the increase in solution conductivity. Particularly, the increase in solution conductivity decreased dramatically the ohmic resistance and therefore the time for complete discharge was elongated, with a resultant increase in power. Maximum power achieved varied between 7.6 mW (7.6 Wm-3) at 2.0 mScm-1 and 27.4 mW (27.4 Wm-3) at 40.1 mScm-1.


Santoro, C., Flores-Cadengo, C., Soavi, F., Kodali, M., Merino-Jimenez, I., Gajda, I., …Atanassov, P. (2018). Ceramic Microbial Fuel Cells Stack: Power generation in standard and supercapacitive mode. Scientific Reports, 8(3281),

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 19, 2018
Online Publication Date Feb 19, 2018
Publication Date Dec 1, 2018
Journal Scientific Reports
Electronic ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher Nature Research (part of Springer Nature)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Issue 3281
Keywords microbial fuel cell, stack, supercapacitive mode, ceramic, power generation
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