CHEMISTRY

A study into the relationship between starch concentration provided to bacteria and their enegry production in a Microbial Fuel Cell

By Karla Delgado

Microbial Fuel Cells produce electric energy from oxidation reactions done by microbes, including glucose oxidation. Although these are very effective and a renewable way of producing energy, it is still under research which ways can be used to maximize its production of energy. It was hypothesized that, as starch is a glucose polymer, if increasing starch concentration, energy production could be maximized. A Microbial Fuel Cell was built and varying concentrations of starch were used to feed the bacteria. The results were that, as predicted, there was a growing tendency. However, a plateau was reached. It was concluded that increasing starch concentration is an effective way of increasing the production of energy in a Microbial Fuel Cell, but a better design of the salt bridge, and a further study of the enzymatic activities outside and inside the bacteria, would give us a better view of what could be done in order to produce a higher voltage before the plateau is reached.

 

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Environmental chemistry for everyone through the Microbial Fuel Cell

By Perla Marysol Peña Reséndiz

The current energy demand has become a crisis whereby nations encourage the use of sustainable energy. Most of the technological systems that are proposed are only suitable, in terms of maintenance, for developed countries; on the other hand, for nations in inferior positions, this option does not exist, hence the importance of promoting renewable energies based on organic matter, which we produce every day; in this way, we foment the fight against the energy crisis. The usefulness of Organic Ingredients from plants is investigated for the functioning of a Microbial Fuel Cell, taking advantage of organic waste, and simultaneously demonstrating that anyone is capable to benefit the planet with the study and application of Environmental Chemistry.

 

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