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Conceived, Synthesized and Characterized Bio-anode for paper-based bacterial fuel cell

Conceived, Synthesized and Characterized Bio-anode for paper-based bacterial fuel cell

By In Aiv Internship On October 21, 2019


Internship Proposal 2019-2020: contact person Jeremie-Luc Sanchez (jl.sanchez@cri-paris.org)

Field of training targeted : Materials

Host Institution
Name : Chimie de la Matière Condensée de Paris
Address : 4, place Jussieu, 75005 Paris
Director: Christian Bonhomme
E-mail : christian.bonhomme@sorbonne-universite.fr

Hosting Team : Reactive Material for Energy Devices
Team leader : Christel Laberty-Robert
Direct Supervisor : Christel Laberty-Robert
Position : Professeur
Tel : 014427 56 78
E-mail : christel.laberty@sorbonne-universite.fr
Internship period *: 5 to 6 months not earlier than January 13, 2020.
Salary : ~ 450 euros

Scientific Project:
This master’s thesis proposes to design a paper-based bio-electrode for integration in easy, scalable equipment for depolluting water and producing simultaneously electricity. The proposed paper-based
microbial fuel cell will have many advantages over other types of fuel cells, as (i) it is capable of generating electricity from various kinds of organic matter, such as glucose, urine, biomass, wastewater, and even commercial beverages. Moreover, (ii) the device structure is much simpler than others, (iii) the material/fabrication is cost effective, and (iv) these devices are environmentally friendly, so they can be economically disposed of by incineration.

To do so, we will use our recent development of carbon based paper. Recently, we have optimized an easy, scalable processes allowing the fabrication of electrode made of intermingled carbon fibers with a diameter of ~ 150 nm. These electrospun carbon microfibers bioanodes exhibit excellent electrochemical performances. Power and current densities of about 56 mW.m-2 and 240 mA.m-2, are achieved which is noticeably better than a conventional commercial carbon felts in the same conditions. These is mainly due to the microstructure of the carbon fibers that is adapted to the bacteria dimension. More importantly, we have also developed a long-term storage of the bioanode through cryodesiccation.

The main objectives of this master thesis is to develop a paper based bio-fuel cell and to evaluate their properties. It will consist in a) the synthesis and the characterization of the carbon paper, b) the integration of the carbon paper in paper based bacterial fuel cell (Figure 1c), c) and the evaluation of their electrochemical characteristic (power and density) at the ambient temperature. Two different anolytes will be used, synthetic anolyte and wastewater. The impact of the flow onto the electrochemical
performances will be analyzed.

  1. Specific techniques or methods:
    The synthesis of carbon paper will be performed by electrospinning. The characterization of the carbon paper will be used through Raman Spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, SEM-EDX analyses and XPS in order
    to define the structure, the microstructure and the chemical composition. The ex-situ colonization will be performed and the bio-anode will be characterized through different live-dead tests, SEM-EDX analyses in order to localize bacteria and to evaluate their viability. Finally, the performance of the bioelectrode will be performed via cyclic voltametry and polarization curves. The impact of anolyte flow as well as the nature of the anolyte will be studied onto the performances.
  2. References:
    – B. E. Logan & K. Rabaey – Conversion of Wastes into Bioelectricity and Chemicals by Using Microbial Electrochemical Technologies. Science 337, 686 LP – 690 (2012).
    – B. R. Ringeisen et al. High power density from a miniature microbial fuel cell using Shewanella oneidensis DSP10. Environ. Sci. Technol. 40, 2629–2634 (2006).
    – D. Pinto. Electronic transfer within a microbial fuel cell. Better understanding of Experimental and Structural Parameters at the Interface between Electro-active Bacteria and Carbon-based Electrodes. École doctorale Physique et chimie des matériaux (Paris) (Sorbonne Université, 2016), J.L Sanchez, (Université de Paris, 2019)