Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the combination of two technologies - pulsed electric field (PEF) pre-treatment and semi-continuous pre-fermentation of primary sludge (PS) - to produce volatile fatty acids (VFAs) as the electron donor for microbial electrolysis cells (MECs). Pre-fermentation with a 3-day solids retention time (SRT) led to the maximum generation of VFAs, with or without pretreatment of the PS through pulsed-electric-fields (PEF). PEF treatment before fermentation enhanced the accumulation of the preferred VFA, acetate, by 2.6-fold. Correspondingly, MEC anodes fed with centrate from 3-day pre-fermentation of PEF-treated PS had a maximum current density ∼3.1 A/m2, which was 2.4-fold greater than the control pre-fermented centrate. Over the full duration of batch MEC experiments, using pre-fermented centrate led to successful performance in terms of Coulombic efficiency (95%), Coulombic recovery (80%), and COD-removal efficiency (85%).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-88
Number of pages6
JournalBioresource Technology
Volume195
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2015

Fingerprint

Regenerative fuel cells
Electrochemical cells
Volatile fatty acids
Fermentation
fermentation
Volatile Fatty Acids
electric field
sludge
Electric fields
electrokinesis
fatty acid
fold
density current
acetate
Anodes
Acetates
Current density
Recovery
electron
effect

Keywords

  • Microbial electrolysis cell
  • Pre-fermentation
  • Pre-treatment
  • Two-stage anaerobic treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal

Cite this

Effects of pre-fermentation and pulsed-electric-field treatment of primary sludge in microbial electrochemical cells. / Ki, Dongwon; Parameswaran, Prathap; Popat, Sudeep C.; Rittmann, Bruce; Torres, Cesar.

In: Bioresource Technology, Vol. 195, 01.05.2015, p. 83-88.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Rittmann, Bruce

AU - Torres, Cesar

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