Optofluidics based micro-photocatalytic fuel cell for efficient wastewater treatment and electricity generation
In this work, an optofluidics based micro-photocatalytic fuel cell with a membrane-free and air-breathing mode was proposed to greatly enhance the cell performance. The incorporation of the optofluidic technology into a photocatalytic fuel cell not only enlarges the specific illumination and reaction area but also enhances the photon and mass transfer, which eventually boosts the photocatalytic reaction rate. Our results show that this new photocatalytic fuel cell yields a much higher performance in converting organics into electricity. A maximum power density of 0.58 mW cm−2 was achieved. The degradation performance of this new optofluidic micro-photocatalytic fuel cell was also evaluated and the maximum degradation efficiency reached 83.9%. In short, the optofluidic micro-photocatalytic fuel cell developed in this work shows promising potential for simultaneously degrading organic pollutants and generating electricity.