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Applying bio-electric field of microbial fuel cell-upflow anaerobic sludge blanket reactor catalyzed blast furnace dusting ash for promoting anaerobic digestion

Yang, Guang, Wang, Jie, Zhang, Hongwei, Jia, Hui, Zhang, Yang, Gao, Fei
Water research 2019 v.149 pp. 215-224
Firmicutes, acetogens, adsorption, anaerobic digestion, chemical oxygen demand, cost effectiveness, dusting, electrochemistry, electron transfer, fuel cells, fuels, furnaces, gas production (biological), hematite, magnetite, methanogens, microbial communities, organic compounds, sludge, synergism, upflow anaerobic sludge blanket reactor
In this study, a novel manner of bio-electric field (BEF) which generated by upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB)-microbial fuel cell (MFC) integrated system facilitated iron-carbon micro-electrolysis in blast furnace dusting ash (BFDA) was proposed for the reinforcement of anaerobic digestion in UASB. The responses of COD removal efficiency and biogas production with (0.1–0.4 V) BEF catalyzed 5 g BFDA(RMFC-5gBFDA-UASB) were much higher than the other tests, and maximum reached 86% and 240 ml/d respectively. Ultra-fast acidogenesis was achieved with 0.3 V BEF supplied to BFDA and the time shortened 94 h compared controlled (RUASB) with RMFC-5gBFDA-UASB. With the electrochemical and microbial community analysis, the redox ability and direct interspecies electron transfer accumulated with BEF catalyzed. The abundance of Firmicutes which could generate bio-hydrogen was highest in RMFC-5gBFDA-UASB (44.58%) compared to RUASB (31.36%) and R5gBFDA-UASB (40.04%). In addition, the structure and morphology variation of BFDA revealed that the synergistic effects of BEF stimulated iron-carbon micro-electrolysis for electron transferring and enhanced the activities of methanogens and acetogens with high relative abundance to biotransform organic compounds, as well as adsorption and precipitation of iron oxides (hematite and magnetite) promoting anaerobic digestion. The MFC-BFDA-UASB integrated system provides a promising and cost-effective way to enhance anaerobic digestion and recycled functionalized waste effectively.