Comparative study between synthetic and dairy wastewaters in single chamber microbial fuel cell for power generation

Original scientific paper

  • Payel Choudhury Department of Bioengineering, National Institute of Technology Agartala, Agartala-799046, India
  • Ria Majumdar Department of Civil Engineering, National Institute of Technology Agartala, Agartala-799046, India
  • Tarun Kanti Bandyopadhyaya Department of Chemical Engineering, National Institute of Technology Agartala, Agartala-799046, India
Keywords: Green technology, microbial fuel cell, voltage generation, synthetic wastewater, dairy wastewater
Graphical Abstract


To investigate the performance of microbial fuel cell (MFC) with a single-chamber membrane, Pseudomonas aeruginosa is used as a biocatalyst for various synthetic wastewaters rich in carbohydrate and is compared with real dairy wastewater in this experiment. Therefore, the choice of appropriate carbon, nitrogen, NaCl, inoculum content, temperature, and pH process parameters used for preparing synthetic wastewater was agreed upon by one-variable-at-a time approach. Maximum level of voltage generation attained from the synthetic wastewater was 485 mV when supple­mented with 1.5 % of lactose as a source of carbon, 0.3 % of ammonium chloride as a decent nitrogen source, 0.03 % of NaCl, inoculum concentration of 3 %, the temperature at 37 oC and pH 7. On the other hand, the maximum voltage attained with real dairy wastewater was 561 mV with high chemical oxygen demand (COD) value of 801 mg l-1. The maximum power density obtained from dairy wastewater was 73.54 mW m-2. High voltage achieved for MFC operating with real dairy wastewater suggests that it can be used not only for the industrial application to generate more renewable power, but also for the wastewater treatment carried out at the same time.


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Bioelectrochemistry & Fuel Cells