Development of Membrane-less Biofuel Cells for Implantable Electrically Operated Devices

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Chemical Engineering & Advanced Material

Abstract

Advances made in medical science have led to an increasing number of implantable devices, which need miniaturised, implantable and lowpower power sources to support their operation. Fuel cell research and development has enormous potential to revolutionise power sources. Biofuel cells use biocatalysts to convert chemical energy into electrical energy and offer specific advantages over other renewable energy conversion methods. Thus the aim of this project is to develop an implantable, miniature, long-life and low-power fuel cell. Although there is promise in biofuel cells there are a number of problems and challenges to be overcome, which include development of suitable enzyme electrocatalysts and miniaturisation of compact cell systems. In the proposed research, the focus will be on developing more efficient novel enzyme electrodes by investigating new methods for immobilising enzymes onto electrode substrates and modifying enzymes and mediators. The programme will research novel systems, based on nano-carbons and membrane-less fuel cells, to create compact low cost power sources. The programme involves collaboration with a leading International research group in North America and the medical school and nanotechnology centre at Newcastle. Furthermore the application of carbon nanotubes in biofuel cells makes possible the development of nano fuel cells for powering nano devices
 
Description KTA
Amount £45,930 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2011 
End 07/2012
 
Description KTA
Amount £58,388 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2010 
End 06/2011
 
Description Knowledge transfer award, impact accelerate award
Amount £15,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2014 
End 07/2015
 
Description RRFW
Amount £67,435 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/K015788/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 04/2012 
End 10/2012
 
Description RRFW
Amount £593,510 (GBP)
Funding ID NE/L01422X/1 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 08/2013 
End 07/2017
 
Description Jacob 
Organisation RWTH Aachen University
Department Institute of Biotechnology
Country Germany 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Investigation and characterisation of mutant enzymes for biosensor and bioelectrochemical applications.
Collaborator Contribution Provide mutant enzymes and introduce techniques for enzyme purification.
Impact Publication Yu, E., Prodanovic, R., Güven, G., Ostafe, R., and Schwaneberg, U., Electrochemical Oxidation of Glucose Using Mutant Glucose Oxidase from Directed Protein Evolution for Biosensor and Biofuel Cell Applications. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology, 2011. 165(7): p. 1448-1457. Grant EPSRC Knowledge Transfer Award: Development of NEFA biosensors This is a multi-disciplinary collaboration between chemical engineering and bioscience.
Start Year 2007
 
Description PennState 
Organisation Penn State University
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Introduce new oxygen reduction catalysts to microbial fuel cells (MFC), and introduce new method of preparing electrodes.
Collaborator Contribution Provide cell design and set up MFCs for investigation.
Impact Publications Yu, E.H., Cheng, S., Scott, K., and Logan, B., Microbial fuel cell performance with non-Pt cathode catalysts. Journal of Power Sources, 2007. 171(2): p. 275-281. Yu, E.H., Cheng, S., Logan, B.E., and Scott, K., Electrochemical reduction of oxygen with iron phthalocyanine in neutral media. Journal of Applied Electrochemistry, 2009. 39(5): p. 705-711. Grants NERC Resource recovery from waste NE/K015788/1, NE/L01422X/1 (1.1M) Collaboration between Chemical Engineering and Civil Engineering
Start Year 2006
 
Description Tokyo Uni 
Organisation University of Tokyo
Country Japan 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Develop a new method to modify biopolymer with redox property for biosensor/biofuel cell applications.
Collaborator Contribution Provide biopolymer and hosted research visit.
Impact Publications Yu, E., Himuro, Y., Takai, M., and Ishihara, K., Feasibility Study of Introducing Redox Property by Modification of PMBN Polymer for Biofuel Cell Applications. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology, 2010. 160(4): p. 1094-1101. Prepared several grant proposals. It is a multi-disciplinary collaboration between electrochemical engineering and materials science.
Start Year 2007