Substrate degradation kinetics, microbial diversity, and current efficiency of microbial fuel cells supplied with marine plankton Public Deposited

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  • The decomposition of marine plankton in two-chamber, seawater-filled microbial fuel cells (MFCs) has been investigated and related to resulting chemical changes, electrode potentials, current efficiencies, and microbial diversity. Six experiments were run at various discharge potentials, and a seventh served as an open-circuit control. The plankton consisted of a mixture of freshly captured phytoplankton and zooplankton (0.21 to 1 mm) added at an initial batch concentration of 27.5 mmol liter¯¹ particulate organic carbon (OC). After 56.7 days, between 19.6 and 22.2% of the initial OC remained, sulfate reduction coupled to OC oxidation accounted for the majority of the OC that was degraded, and current efficiencies (of the active MFCs) were between 11.3 and 15.5%. In the open-circuit control cell, anaerobic plankton decomposition (as quantified by the decrease in total OC) could be modeled by three terms: two first-order reaction rate expressions (0.79 day¯¹ and 0.037 day¯¹, at 15°C) and one constant, no-reaction term (representing 10.6% of the initial OC). However, in each active MFC, decomposition rates increased during the third week, lagging just behind periods of peak electricity generation. We interpret these decomposition rate changes to have been due primarily to the metabolic activity of sulfur-reducing microorganisms at the anode, a finding consistent with the electrochemical oxidization of sulfide to elemental sulfur and the elimination of inhibitory effects of dissolved sulfide. Representative phylotypes, found to be associated with anodes, were allied with Delta-, Epsilon-, and Gammaproteobacteria as well as the Flavobacterium-Cytophaga-Bacteroides and Fusobacteria. Based upon these results, we posit that higher current efficiencies can be achieved by optimizing plankton-fed MFCs for direct electron transfer from organic matter to electrodes, including microbial precolonization of high-surface-area electrodes and pulsed flowthrough additions of biomass.
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  • Reimers, C. E., Stecher, H. A., III, Westall, J. C., Alleau, Y., Howell, K. A., Soule, L., White, H. K. and Girguis, P. R., 2007, Substrate degradation kinetics, microbial diversity, and current efficiency of microbial fuel cells supplied with marine plankton: Appl. Env. Microbiology, v. 73, p. 7,029-7,040. [Label Appl Env Microbiol 73 7029-7040]
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  • description.provenance : Approved for entry into archive by Linda Kathman(linda.kathman@oregonstate.edu) on 2010-03-11T14:32:49Z (GMT) No. of bitstreams: 1 Reimers et al. 2007.pdf: 975059 bytes, checksum: b0b949aa15663dad7fb1ee7cf271f220 (MD5)
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  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2010-03-11T14:32:49Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 1 Reimers et al. 2007.pdf: 975059 bytes, checksum: b0b949aa15663dad7fb1ee7cf271f220 (MD5) Previous issue date: 2007-11

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