Microbial electrosynthesis is a useful form of technology for the renewable production of organic commodities from biologically catalyzed reduction of CO2. However, for the technology to become applicable, process selectivity, stability and efficiency need strong improvement. Here we report on the effect of different electrochemical control modes (potentiostatic/galvanostatic) on both the start-up characteristics and steady-state performance of biocathodes using a non-enriched mixed-culture inoculum. Based on our results, it seems that kinetic differences exist between the two dominant functional microbial groups (i.e., homoacetogens and methanogens) and that by applying different current densities, these differences may be exploited to steer product selectivity and reactor performance.
- Bioelectrochemical systems (BES)
- Current density
- Microbial electrosynthesis (MES)