Oxidised stainless steel: a very effective electrode material for microbial fuel cell bioanodes but at high risk of corrosion

Electrochimica Acta, Volume 158,  2015, Pages 356-360.

Pablo Ledezma1, Bogdan C. Donose2, Stefano Freguia1,2, Jurg Keller1

  1. Advanced Water Management Centre, The University of Queensland, Brisbane QLD 4072, Australia.
  2. Centre for Microbial Electrosynthesis, The University of Queensland, Brisbane QLD 4072, Australia.

 

Abstract

Bioelectrochemical systems (BES) are gaining momentum as biotechnological alternatives for self-powered wastewater treatment and the recovery of valuable products from waste. However, there is a strong need to reduce system costs and therefore some types of stainless steel (SS) electrodes have been proposed as an alternative to carbonaceous electrode materials, but their corrosion remains a strong concern. We hereby demonstrate that a facile SS modification results in up to 45.367 mA cm−3 current production at room temperature – the highest volumetric current density reported to date for BES bioanodes–but that this benefit comes at a high risk of corrosion, which compromises the applicability of SS-based Microbial Fuel Cells.

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