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Sediment microbial fuel cells

Research Achievements

Sediment microbial fuel cells

One of the biggest smart environment challenges is to have a power source that is renewable and produces enough power for sensors. Current research on sediment microbial fuel cells has demonstrated that they care a renewable power source and can produce several mW continuous power, while MFCs are limited to mW level power. This low power can only be enough to operate a low power sensor and transfer data several hundred feet. We are designing a SMFC and an advanced power management system and deployed it in the Palouse River. These novel concepts made it possible to generate 2.5 W from a SMFC and to operate a wireless sensor transmitting temperature data 10 miles away from the sensor. This is the first demonstration of watt-level power generation from SMFCs. Our results demonstrated that SMFCs can be a viable alternative renewable power source for remote sensors requiring high power consumption.