Author(s): Guo K, Donose BC, Soeriyadi AH, Prvoteau A, Patil SA,
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Abstract Stainless steel (SS) can be an attractive material to create large electrodes for microbial bioelectrochemical systems (BESs), due to its low cost and high conductivity. However, poor biocompatibility limits its successful application today. Here we report a simple and effective method to make SS electrodes biocompatible by means of flame oxidation. Physicochemical characterization of electrode surface indicated that iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) were generated in situ on an SS felt surface by flame oxidation. IONPs-coating dramatically enhanced the biocompatibility of SS felt and consequently resulted in a robust electroactive biofilm formation at its surface in BESs. The maximum current densities reached at IONPs-coated SS felt electrodes were 16.5 times and 4.8 times higher than the untreated SS felts and carbon felts, respectively. Furthermore, the maximum current density achieved with the IONPs-coated SS felt (1.92 mA/cm(2), 27.42 mA/cm(3)) is one of the highest current densities reported thus far. These results demonstrate for the first time that flame oxidized SS felts could be a good alternative to carbon-based electrodes for achieving high current densities in BESs. Most importantly, high conductivity, excellent mechanical strength, strong chemical stability, large specific surface area, and comparatively low cost of flame oxidized SS felts offer exciting opportunities for scaling-up of the anodes for BESs.
This article was published in Environ Sci Technol
and referenced in Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation