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Efficient removal of nitrobenzene and concomitant electricity production by single-chamber microbial fuel cells with activated carbon air-cathode

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Enren Zhang, Professor Fengxiang Wang, Emeritus Professor Keith Scott



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


Removal of inhibitory nitrobenzene (NB) was investigated in single-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs) assembled with pre-enriched bioanodes and active carbon (AC) air-cathodes. High NB tolerance and NB removal were obtained in the present single-chamber MFCs with high electricity production. The maximum power over 25 W m-3 could be obtained when the present S-MFCs were operated in the NB loading range of 1.2 to 6.2 mol m-3 d-1, and stable electricity production over 13.7 W m-3 could be produced in a NB loading range of 1.2 to 14.7 mol m-3 d-1. The present single-chamber MFCs with AC air-cathodes exhibited high NB removal performance with NB removal efficiency over 97% even when the NB loading rate was increased to 17.2 mol m-3 d-1. The potential NB reduced product (i.e. aniline) could also be effectively removed from influents. The findings in this study means that single-chamber MFCs assembled with pre-enriched bioanodes and AC air-cathodes could be developed as effective bioelectrochemical systems to remove NB from wastewaters and to harvest energy instead of consuming energy

Publication metadata

Author(s): Zhang E, Wanga F, Zhaia W, Scott K, Wang X, Diaoa G

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Bioresource Technology

Year: 2017

Volume: 229

Pages: 111-118

Print publication date: 01/04/2017

Online publication date: 12/02/2017

Acceptance date: 06/01/2017

Date deposited: 03/02/2017

ISSN (print): 0960-8524

ISSN (electronic): 1873-2976

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2017.01.009


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Funder referenceFunder name
National Natural Science Foundation of China 21406171
National Natural Science Foundation of China 21173184