Fabrication of Macroporous Chitosan Scaffolds Doped With Carbon Nanotubes and Their Characterization In Microbial Fuel Cell Operation.
Enzyme and microbial technology. 2011 May 06; 48: 458-65.
Chitosan (CHIT) scaffolds doped with multi-walled carbon nanotubes (CNT) were fabricated and evaluated for their utility as a microbial fuel cell (MFC) anodic material. High resolution microscopy verified the ability of Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 to directly colonize CHIT-CNT scaffolds. Cross-linking agents 1-ethyl-3-[3-dimethylaminopropyl] carbodimide hydrochloride (EDC), glutaraldehyde and glyoxal were independently studied for their ability to strengthen the CHIT-CNT matrix without disrupting the final pore structure. 2.5 vol% glyoxal was found to be the optimal cross-linker in terms of porosity (BET surface area=30.2 m(2) g(-1)) and structural stability. Glyoxyl and EDC cross-linked CHIT-CNT scaffolds were then studied for their ability to transfer electrons to underlying glassy carbon. Results showed an open circuit cell voltage of 600 mV and a maximum power density of 4.75 W/m(3) at a current density of 16 A/m(3) was achieved in non stirred batch mode, which compares well with published data using carbon felt electrodes where a power density of 3.5 W/m(3) at a current density of 7 A/m(3) have been reported. Additionally, CHIT-CNT scaffolds were impregnated into carbon felt electrodes and these results suggest that CHIT-CNT scaffolds can be successfully integrated with multiple support materials to create hybrid electrode materials. Further, preliminary tests indicate that the integrated scaffolds offer a robust macroporous electrode material that can be used in flow-through configurations.