Date: January 6, 2014
Time: 4:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Location: Computer Science 104
Professor Bruce Logan, of Penn State University, presents “Microbial Fuel Cell and Reverse Electrodialysis Technologies for Renewable Power Generation From Biomass and Salinity Gradients” as part of the Andlinger Center’s 2013-2014 Highlight Seminar Series.
The ability of certain microorganisms to transfer electrons outside the cell has created opportunities for new methods of renewable energy generation based on microbial fuel cells (MFCs) that can be used to produce electrical power, microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) for transforming biologically generated electrical current into transportable fuels such as hydrogen and methane gases, as well as other devices to desalinate water or capture phosphorus. In this presentation I will summarize key findings in the general area of electromicrobiology that are related to exoelectrogenic microorganisms and communities that produce electrical current, and electrotrophic and methanogenic communities that are used to produce hydrogen and methane gases. I will also summarize three methods of capturing energy from salinity gradients either using freshwater/wastewater and seawater, or waste heat, and show how these energy production methods can be integrated into these different microbial electrochemical technologies (METs). Recent advances will be highlighted on materials and architectures that are being developed to make these different types of METs more cost efficient, bringing them closer to being commercially practical technologies.
Dr. Bruce Logan is an Evan Pugh Professor, the Stan & Flora Kappe Professor of Environmental Engineering, and Director of the Engineering Energy & Environmental Institute at Penn State University. His main research efforts are in bioenergy production and the development of an energy sustainable water infrastructure. Dr. Logan is the author or co-author of over 350 refereed publications (h-index of 89) and several books, and founding Deputy Editor of the new ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology Letters. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and a fellow of AAAS, the International Water Association, and the Water Environment Federation. Dr. Logan is a visiting professor at Newcastle University (England) and Tsinghua University (China) among others, with ties to several universities in Saudi Arabia, Belgium and China. He received his Ph.D. in 1986 from the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to joining the faculty at Penn State in 1997, he was on the faculty at the University of Arizona.