Relationship between liquid change in dual chambers and performance of electricity production in DCMFC
【Abstract】The liquid level difference between the cathode and the anode increased obviously with increase of operation cycles in the dual chamber microbial fuel cell (DCMFC). To analyze this phenomenon, the transport behavior of proton and water was investigated from evaporation, osmotic pressure, metabolism and electric field. The relationship between water production and the fuel’s performance was studied. The results showed that within 360 h, the liquid change due to evaporation and osmotic pressure was less than 0.50 mL (the liquid level declined by about 0.5 mm). Within 312 h of circuit breakage, the anodic metabolism gas led to the proton exchange membrane (PEM) deformation convex to the cathode. The anodic liquid decreased 6.20 mL (the liquid level reduced by about 6.5 mm), the cathodic liquid increased by 10.75 mL (the liquid level rose by about 11.2 mm) and the liquid level difference reached 17.7 mm. Under the circuit connection, except the PEM deformation, the protons were dragged by electro-osmosis to the cathode and reduced to water. Within 312 h, the anodic liquid decreased by 10.70 mL (the liquid level reduced by about 11.1 mm), the cathodic liquid increased by 17.00 mL (the liquid level rose by about 17.7 mm), and then a 28.8 mm liquid level difference was formed. Moreover, the water transmission increased with the increase of output voltage. The results implied that the biological metabolism and electro-osmosis had important influences on DCMFC liquid difference. It was possible to calculate proton transfer rate based on its water production. The proton transfer rate in the system was over 54%. This study provided a simple and intuitive basis for judging the electricity production efficiency.
【Keywords】 fuel cells; liquid volume change; electro-osmosis drag; proton transfer; bio-catalysis; anaerobic;
(Translated by SUN Z)
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