Sulfonated graphene oxide and titanium dioxide coated with nanostructured polyaniline nanocomposites as an efficient cathode catalyst in microbial fuel cells.Mater Sci Eng C Mater Biol Appl. 2020 Mar; 108:110498.MS
In this study, sulfonated graphene oxide (SGO) was synthesized as potential conducting matrix to improve the properties of catalyst for single chamber microbial fuel cells (SC-MFCs). Here, TiO2 and Polyaniline (PAni) nanoparticles were anchored over SGO and the resulting SGO-TiO2-PAni nanocomposites were used as a potential cathode catalyst in MFCs. We have also examined the performance of SGO-TiO2-PAni compared to GO-TiO2-PAni and TiO2-PAni catalyst. The structural and morphological analyses were examined using a variety of characterization techniques. TiO2 nanoparticles bridged PAni and SGO through hydrogen bonding/electrostatic interaction and improved the thermal stability of SGO-TiO2-PAni catalyst. The electrochemical characterizations of these nanocatalysts suggest that the SGO-TiO2-PAni showed higher reduction current value (-0.46 mA), enhanced stability, and lower internal resistance (46.2 Ω) in comparison to GO-TiO2-PAni and TiO2-PAni towards oxygen reduction reactions (ORR). Consequently, MFC using SGO-TiO2-PAni demonstrated a maximum power density of 904.18 mWm-2 than that of GO-TiO2-PAni (734.12 mWm-2), TiO2-PAni (561.5 mWm-2) and Pt/C (483.5 mWm-2). The enhanced catalytic activity of SGO-TiO2-PAni catalyst was ascribed to the high electronic conductivity and long-term permanence of the nanocomposite. These superior electrochemical results suggested that the SGO-TiO2-PAni catalyst could be applied as a potential alternative to the commercial Pt/C cathode catalyst for the application of MFCs.