Fuel Cell Uses Microbes To Produce Renewable Electricity From Sewage Water
Scientists at the Rockville, Maryland based Craig Venter Institute revealed a microbial fuel cell that uses microbes to produce renewable electricity from sewage water. The scientists claim that the microbial fuel cell can convert up to 13 percent of the potential energy stored in sewage water into electricity that can be used to offset the electricity demands of a sewagetreatment plant and could also assist in the treatment of sewage water.
How a Fuel Cell Uses Microbes To Produce Renewable Electricity From Sewage Water
A microbial fuel cell http://forums.pdfforge.org/discussion/53142/discover-some-home-renovation-help-through-information makes use of naturally occurring microbes within sewage water to collect electrons and protons that are produced by the microbes as they metabolize (digest) the organic waste contained in sewage water. The electrons produced by the microbes are collected in an anode container, while the protons produced by the microbes filter through a permeable membrane within the fuel cell to a separate cathode container. The difference in charge between the anode and cathode containers creates voltage between the two containers (electrodes) that results in a useful electric current.
When the microbes metabolize the organic waste contained in sewage water to produce electricity, they also remove a significant amount of organic matter (approximately 97%), which could assist in the treatment of sewage water. There is the possibility that microbial fuel cells could be used as an alternative sewage water treatment method, while producing electricity as a side benefit.
The amount of electricity utilized by sewage treatment plants that treat sewage water is not an insignificant amount. It totals approximately two percent of the electricity used in the United States each year. If sewage treatment plants in the United States and around the world install microbial fuel cells to offset their electricity needs, they will not only lessen the demand for electricity by producing it on-site via a renewable resource, they will also save a considerable amount of money that is currently spent on purchasing electricity.