Wastewater treatment requires electric power, but if it is up to Wageningen scientists this process will actually produce electricity. They have found a way to collect energy from the bacteria that are breaking down the waste.
There are bacteria that produce electrons while doing their cleaning work. These bacteria will only be able to survive if they can shed those electrons. Therefore, tiny carbon balls are added to the process. The bacteria slowly charge these specially designed balls, which can be discharged rapidly and are then brought back into the process. The yield is truly green electricity. This is how Wageningen UR improves the quality of life.
Microbial Fuel Cells
Wageningen University’s sub-department Environmental Technology conducts research into the development of so-called Microbial Fuel Cells, using the activity of microorganisms to produce energy.
The research combines water purifying techniques with techniques to make the most use of the resources that are recovered during this process. The webpage of the sub-department of Environmental Technology provides a lot of information about Reusable water and Biorecovery of energy and minerals.