Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Nano-engineering electrodes to give tiny generators a boost

A 3D atomic force microscope topography image of metallic nanoparticles deposited on graphite.
A 3D atomic force microscope topography image of metallic nanoparticles deposited on graphite.

Abstract:
Could our waste be part of the answer to humanity's energy problems? Some researchers think so, thanks to bacteria that chow down on everything from sewage to heavy metals and give off electricity as one of their own waste products.

Nano-engineering electrodes to give tiny generators a boost

Okinawa, Japan | Posted on September 21st, 2012

But as with many great ideas, the devil is in the details. OIST's Biological Systems Unit is one of the research groups now working on making waste-fueled microbial fuel cells (MFCs) cheap and efficient enough for real-world applications.

One great challenge in achieving that goal is designing sturdy, cheap electrodes for MFCs that conduct electricity well, resist corrosion, and won't poison bacteria that cling to their surfaces. To this end, the Nanoparticles by Design Unit is working with the Biological Systems Unit to build and test new types of nanoparticle-studded electrodes. The idea is to coat a core of cheap material with a very thin layer of a more expensive, biocompatible metal, then stick the resulting nanoparticles onto the surface of a carbon electrode. In addition to harnessing the properties of the expensive metal at minimal cost, this will increase the surface area of the electrode so that it can host more electricity-generating bacteria.

Other researchers have found that nanoparticle-studded carbon electrodes increase the electricity output of MFCs up to 20-fold compared with plain carbon electrodes; Nanoparticles by Design Unit head Mukhles Sowwan hopes to increase this by experimenting with different sizes, compositions, and methods of pinning the nanoparticles to the electrode surface. Says Sowwan, "I believe that this innovative multidisciplinary approach in applying cutting-edge research could lead to the development of efficient microbial fuel cells."

####

About Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology - OIST
The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology is an interdisciplinary graduate school offering a 5-year PhD program in Science. Over half of the faculty and students are recruited from outside Japan, and all education and research is conducted entirely in English. OIST researchers are conducting multi-disciplinary research in five major areas: Neuroscience, Molecular Sciences, Environmental and Ecological Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Mathematical Computational Sciences. In the six years leading up to graduate school accreditation, OIST received recognition for doing original research and sponsoring innovative international workshops and courses.

The graduate school accepts 20 students per year, creating a very low student to instructor ratio. Students also receive support for living costs, health care, housing, childcare, and other needs that would otherwise distract them from the science. Balancing lectures and lab work, the doctoral program places students in well-funded labs where they work side-by-side with top researchers on state-of-the-art equipment. Frequent visits from internationally-known scientists further enrich the program and provide opportunities for collaboration and exchange. By the time they graduate, students have accumulated not only abstract knowledge and practical skills but also the kind of professional connections necessary to launch their careers as world-class researchers.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Neil Calder

Copyright © AlphaGalileo

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

A 'smart dress' for oil-degrading bacteria July 24th, 2016

New remote-controlled microrobots for medical operations July 23rd, 2016

New superconducting coil improves MRI performance: UH-led research offers higher resolution, shorter scan time July 23rd, 2016

New probe developed for improved high resolution measurement of brain temperature: Improved accuracy could allow researchers to measure brain temperature in times of trauma when small deviations in temperature can lead to additional brain injury July 23rd, 2016

New Yale-developed device lengthens the life of quantum information July 22nd, 2016

Imaging

New superconducting coil improves MRI performance: UH-led research offers higher resolution, shorter scan time July 23rd, 2016

Molecular Machines

New remote-controlled microrobots for medical operations July 23rd, 2016

Pushing a single-molecule switch: An international team of researchers from Donostia International Physics Center, Fritz-Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, University of Liverpool, and the Polish Academy of Sciences has shown a new way to operate a single-molecule switch July 19th, 2016

Researchers harness DNA as the engine of super-efficient nanomachine: New platform detects traces of everything from bacteria to viruses, cocaine and metals July 10th, 2016

On the path toward molecular robots: Scientists at Japan's Hokkaido University have developed light-powered molecular motors that repetitively bend and unbend, bringing us closer to molecular robots. July 8th, 2016

Molecular Nanotechnology

New remote-controlled microrobots for medical operations July 23rd, 2016

Scientists develop way to upsize nanostructures into light, flexible 3-D printed materials: Virginia Tech, Livermore National Lab researchers develop hierarchical 3-D printed metallic materials July 20th, 2016

Pushing a single-molecule switch: An international team of researchers from Donostia International Physics Center, Fritz-Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, University of Liverpool, and the Polish Academy of Sciences has shown a new way to operate a single-molecule switch July 19th, 2016

Researchers harness DNA as the engine of super-efficient nanomachine: New platform detects traces of everything from bacteria to viruses, cocaine and metals July 10th, 2016

Discoveries

A 'smart dress' for oil-degrading bacteria July 24th, 2016

New remote-controlled microrobots for medical operations July 23rd, 2016

New superconducting coil improves MRI performance: UH-led research offers higher resolution, shorter scan time July 23rd, 2016

Quantum drag:University of Iowa physicist says current in one iron magnetic sheet can create quantized spin waves in another, separate sheet July 22nd, 2016

Announcements

A 'smart dress' for oil-degrading bacteria July 24th, 2016

New remote-controlled microrobots for medical operations July 23rd, 2016

New superconducting coil improves MRI performance: UH-led research offers higher resolution, shorter scan time July 23rd, 2016

New probe developed for improved high resolution measurement of brain temperature: Improved accuracy could allow researchers to measure brain temperature in times of trauma when small deviations in temperature can lead to additional brain injury July 23rd, 2016

Tools

New superconducting coil improves MRI performance: UH-led research offers higher resolution, shorter scan time July 23rd, 2016

The birth of quantum holography: Making holograms of single light particles! July 21st, 2016

Nanometrics Announces Upcoming Investor Events July 20th, 2016

A mini-antenna for the data processing of tomorrow: Nature Nanotechnology: Short-wavelength spin waves generated directly for the first time July 20th, 2016

Energy

Researchers discover key mechanism for producing solar cells: Better understanding of perovskite solar cells could boost widespread use July 21st, 2016

The future of perovskite solar cells has just got brighter -- come rain or shine: Korean researchers at POSTECH have succeeded in developing high-efficiency perovskite solar cells that retain excellent performance over two months in a very humid condition July 21st, 2016

Scientists develop way to upsize nanostructures into light, flexible 3-D printed materials: Virginia Tech, Livermore National Lab researchers develop hierarchical 3-D printed metallic materials July 20th, 2016

Rice's 'antenna-reactor' catalysts offer best of both worlds: Technology marries light-harvesting nanoantennas to high-reaction-rate catalysts July 18th, 2016

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics/Energy storage

Synthesized microporous 3-D graphene-like carbons: IBS research team create carbon synthesis using zeolites as a template July 1st, 2016

Texas A&M Chemist Says Trapped Electrons To Blame For Lack Of Battery Efficiency: Forget mousetraps — today’s scientists will get the cheese if they manage to build a better battery June 28th, 2016

Yale researchers’ technology turns wasted heat into power June 27th, 2016

Stanford researchers find new ways to make clean hydrogen and rechargable zinc batteries June 18th, 2016

Fuel Cells

3-D paper-based microbial fuel cell operating under continuous flow condition July 5th, 2016

Nanoscientists develop the 'ultimate discovery tool': Rapid discovery power is similar to what gene chips offer biology June 25th, 2016

VentureLab nanotechnology startup wins TechConnect Innovation Award June 2nd, 2016

Tiny probe could produce big improvements in batteries and fuel cells: A new method helps scientists get an atom's level understanding of electrochemical properties June 1st, 2016

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic