Trehalose enhancing microbial electrolysis cell for hydrogen generation in low temperature (0°C)

Linji Xu, Wenzong Liu, Yining Wu, Po Heng Lee, Aijie Wang, Shuai Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This work explored the feasibility of a method combining physical (sonication and base) and biological (partial fermentation) processes for sludge treatment and the effects of trehalose on the hydrogen generation of microbial electrolysis cell at 0°C. The results demonstrated that the above pretreatment method was favorable, which promoted organics decomposing into lower molecular weight matter. The promotion of trehalose for MEC efficiency was obvious and the optimal concentration of trehalose was 50mmol/L. With this concentration, the highest hydrogen recovery rate was 0.25m3-H2/-m3-reactor per day. Coulomb efficiency and energy recovery efficiency were 46.4% and 203%, respectively. Further, the consumption order of mixed substances was VFAs>proteins>carbohydrates. For microorganism community, SEM photographs illustrated that the selectivity of environmental temperature for the species of anode bacteria was strong and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis indicated that Microbacterium and Proteobacteria were the two main species and Proteobacteria may be one of the species that produced electrons.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-463
Number of pages6
JournalBioresource Technology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Hydrogen
  • Low temperature
  • Microbial electrolysis cell
  • Sludge
  • Trehalose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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