Electroactive biochar outperforms highly conductive carbon materials for biodegrading pollutants by enhancing microbial extracellular electron transfer

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10045/88307
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Title: Electroactive biochar outperforms highly conductive carbon materials for biodegrading pollutants by enhancing microbial extracellular electron transfer
Authors: Prado, Amanda | Berenguer Betrián, Raúl | Esteve-Núñez, Abraham
Research Group/s: Electrocatálisis y Electroquímica de Polímeros
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Química Física | Universidad de Alicante. Instituto Universitario de Materiales
Keywords: Microbial electrochemical technologies | Carbon materials
Knowledge Area: Química Física
Issue Date: 12-Feb-2019
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Carbon. 2019. doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2019.02.038
Abstract: The development and full-scale application of microbial electrochemical technologies (METs) for wastewater treatment demand massive amounts of electroconductive carbon materials to promote extracellular electron transfer (EET) and biodegradation. While the potential capability of these materials and their properties to design efficient systems is still in their infancy, the state-of-the-art METs are based on highly-conductive fossil-derived carbons. In this work we evaluate the performance of different electroconductive carbon materials (graphite, coke, biochar) for supporting microbial EET and treating urban wastewater. Our results reveal that the electroconductive biochar was the most efficient biofilter-material, enabling to stimulate bioremediation at anodic potential as high as 0.6 V (maximum removal efficiency (92%) and degradation rate (185 g-COD m−3d−1)), and to fulfill the discharge limits under conditions where the other materials failed. A deep materials characterization suggests that, despite electroconductivity is necessary, the optimal EET on biochar can be mainly assigned to its large number of electroactive surface oxygen functionalities, which can reversibly exchange electrons through the geobattery mechanism. We propose the modulation of quinone-like e-acceptors by anodic polarization to promote the biodegradation capability of carbon materials. Because of its great efficiency and sustainability, electroactive biochar will greatly expand the applicability of METs at large scale.
Sponsor: This investigation has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the grant agreement No. 642190 (Project “iMETLAND”; http://www.imetland.eu). Amanda Prado de Nicolás was funded by the “Formación de Personal Investigador (FPI)“ PhD fellowship programme from the University of Alcalá. The authors thank the MINECO and FEDER (IJCI-2014-20012) for financial support.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10045/88307
ISSN: 0008-6223 (Print) | 1873-3891 (Online)
DOI: 10.1016/j.carbon.2019.02.038
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © 2019 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Peer Review: si
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2019.02.038
Appears in Collections:INV - GEPE - Artículos de Revistas
Research funded by the EU

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