Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol 24, Issue 3 2018; Page No.(1278-1284)

A COMPARATIVE STUDY ON THE PERFORMANCE OF MICROBIAL FUEL CELL (MFC) USING THE SUBSTRATE OF TANNERY EFFLUENT INOCULATED WITH MICROBIAL CULTURES OF E. COLI AND SHEWANELLA PUTREFACIENS UNDER BATCH MODE

S. Jayanthi and S. Jothi Venkatraman

Abstract

This study enlightened the performance of a dual chambered Microbial Fuel Cell (DCMFC) configured in a lab scale using the substrates of anaerobic tannery effluent inoculated with E.coli and diluted raw tannery effluent inoculated with Shewanella putrefaciens. Nafion 117 was utilized as the Proton Exchange Membrane for this MFC. Initially, the study was carried out using subcultures of E.coli in 4 batches under batch mode operated in both aerated and unaerated cathode conditions (UACECBR-1:5, UACECB 1:5, ACECB-1:5, ACECB-1:6). The results reveals that ACECB-1:5 showed the better performance in terms of power generation (19357.4µW). 5% to 55% of Coulombic efficiency was attained in those batches and 50% to 83% of COD removal efficiency was achieved. In order to acquire the microbial growth pattern in the anode with the influence of E.coli, SEM analysis on the anode with EDAX was carried out which shows the presence of Cocci, Bacilli and some exoelectrogenic species. The EDAX analysis spot exposes the elemental composition of anode with the presence of Carbon, Oxygen, Arsenic, Chloride, Zinc. Subsequently, the performance study of the same MFC using pure cultures of Shewanella putrefaciens was carried out in three batches (ACSPB-1:4, ACSPB-1:5, ACSPB-1:6) under batch mode and in all the batches the cathode was aerated. While evaluating all the batches, ACSPB-1:5 accomplished the greater performance due to the aeration done at cathode chamber. This batch reveals the highest power generation of 380.124 mW, coulombic efficiency of 69.68% and COD removal efficiency of 70%. SEM analysis with EDAX on the anode was also carried out so as to determine the microbial growth pattern in the anode with the influence of Shewanella putrefaciens which divulge the presence of Cocci, Alcaligenes and some exoelectrogenic species. The EDAX analysis spot represents the elemental composition of anode with the presence of Carbon, Oxygen, Sodium, Chloride and Chromium.

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