Solar Cell-Combined Sediment Microbial Fuel Cell for Preserving Sediment and Water Environments

Tadashi Hibino; Hiroki Takata; Satoshi Yamaji; Narong Touch
Sediment microbial fuel cell (SMFC), an electrochemistry technology, is expected to be an alternative method for improving both water and sediment environments. This study presents the development of a solar cell-combined SMFC system (SC-SMFC), and the improvement of sediment and water environments by SC-SMFC through laboratory experiments. The distributions of pH and redox potential (ORP) in sediment were formed, in which larger decreases in pH and increases in ORP were found near the anode after the SC-SMFC application. From the pH and ORP distributions, the sediment located between 0 mm and 150 mm from the anode was strongly influenced by the SC-SMFC application, which was around 2-fold higher than that influenced by the application of SMFC alone. Interestingly, the system application caused the dissociation of calcium and iron complexes. This dissociation increased the concentrations of calcium and ferric ions, leading to the fixation of phosphate in the sediment. Furthermore, different decomposition characteristics of organic matter were found in the sediments near and far from the anode. In addition, the quality of overlying water was also improved by the system application. For example, the dissolved oxygen concentration remained higher near the sediment surface. These findings validate the usefulness of SC-SMFC as an alternative method for improving both sediment and water environments concurrently.
Solar Cell; Sediment Microbial Fuel Cell; Sediment Quality; Water Quality; Phosphate Fixation
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