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Macromolecular Chemistry II – Prof. Dr. Andreas Greiner (Macromolecular Chemistry & Technology) & Prof. Dr. Seema Agarwal (Advanced Sustainable Polymers)

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New Paper: Electrogenic Single‐Species Biocomposites as Anodes for Microbial Fuel Cells


Electrogenic Single-Species Biocomposites as Anodes for Microbial Fuel Cells
P. Kaiser, S. Reich, D. Leykam, M. Willert-Porada, A. Greiner, R Freitag
Macromol. Biosci. 2017, 17, 1600442

Integration of electrogenic microorganisms remains a challenge in biofuel cell technology. Here, synthetic biocomposites (“artificial biofilms”) are proposed. Bacteria (Shewanella oneidensis) are embedded in a hydrogel matrix (poly(vinyl alcohol)) via wet- and electrospinning, creating fibers and nonwoven gauzes. The bacteria remain viable and metabolically active. The performance is compared to S. oneidensis suspension cultures and “natural” biofilms. While lower than with the suspension cultures, the power output from the fuel cells with the artificial biofilms is higher than with the natural one. Handling, reproducibility, and stability are also better. Artificial biofilms can therefore contribute to resolving fundamental issues of design, scale up, and monosepsis in biofuel cell technology.

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