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Issue 12, 2011
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Identifying charge and mass transfer resistances of an oxygen reducing biocathode

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Abstract

In this study, we identified mass and charge transfer resistances for an oxygen reducing biocathode in a microbial fuel cell (MFC) by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The oxygen reducing biocathode was grown using nitrifying sludge as the inoculum. A standard model for charge transfer at the electrode surface combined with diffusion across a boundary layer was used. EIS measurements were performed under variation of both linear flow velocities and cathode potentials. Fitting the impedance data to the standard model at constant potential and different flow rates confirmed that increasing flow rate had no effect on charge transfer resistance, but led to a decrease in mass transfer resistance. From the variation in cathode potential at constant flow rate, a minimum in charge transfer resistance was found at 0.28 V vs.Ag/AgCl. The minimum in charge transfer resistance could be explained by the combined biochemical and electrochemical kinetics typical for bioelectrochemical systems.

Graphical abstract: Identifying charge and mass transfer resistances of an oxygen reducing biocathode

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Publication details

The article was received on 13 Jul 2011, accepted on 16 Sep 2011 and first published on 19 Oct 2011


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C1EE02131A
Citation: Energy Environ. Sci., 2011,4, 5035-5043
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    Identifying charge and mass transfer resistances of an oxygen reducing biocathode

    A. Ter Heijne, O. Schaetzle, S. Gimenez, F. Fabregat-Santiago, J. Bisquert, D. P. B. T. B. Strik, F. Barrière, C. J. N. Buisman and H. V. M. Hamelers, Energy Environ. Sci., 2011, 4, 5035
    DOI: 10.1039/C1EE02131A

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