Performance of microbial fuel cell in response to change in sludge loading rate at different anodic feed pH
Performance of two dual chambered mediator-less microbial fuel cells (MFCs) was evaluated at different sludge loading rate (SLR) and feed pH. Optimum performance in terms of organic matter removal and power production was obtained at the SLR of 0.75 kg COD kg VSS−1 d−1. Maximum power density of 158 mW/m2 and 600 mW/m2 was obtained in MFC-1 (feed pH 6.0) and MFC-2 (feed pH 8.0), respectively. Internal resistance of the cell decreased with increase in SLR. When operated only with biofilm on anode, the maximum power density was 109.5 mW/m2 in MFC-1 and 459 mW/m2 in MFC-2, which was, respectively, 30% and 23.5% less than the value obtained in MFC-1 and MFC-2 at SLR of 0.75 kg COD kg VSS−1 d−1. Maximum volumetric power of 15.51 W/m3 and 36.72 W/m3 was obtained in MFC-1 and MFC-2, respectively, when permanganate was added as catholyte. Higher feed pH (8.0) favoured higher power production.