Data-driven and validated dimensional analysis for rational scale-up of a dual-chamber microbial fuel cell system for water-energy nexus exploitation

Arshia Fathima, Yong Zheng Liam, IMSK Ilankoon, Meng Nan Chong

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Mathematical modelling of microbial fuel cells (MFC) facilitates their scale-up by maintaining dimensionless parameters across reactor volumes for consistent performance. This study developed data-driven correlations to predict areal power density for a batch-fed dual-chamber MFC using hybridised first-principle mechanistic model and Buckingham's Pi theorem. The established correlations were validated using experimentally-derived data for pre-enriched electroactive biofilm from mixed cultures. The biochemical model parameters are infilled with stoichiometric and thermodynamics estimations. Results showed that the correlations using logistic kinetics (Nash-Sutcliffe Efficiency, NSE = 0.59) outperformed Monod kinetics (NSE = 0.52) as the latter was not suitable for representing the first-order biochemical kinetics under limited substrate conditions. Sensitivity analysis on varying pH and bicarbonate concentration improved model predictions by ± 50%, though relative absolute error was ± 20% due to inherent error of estimated biochemical parameters. The application of hybridised approach for modelling MFC provides renewed perspectives for their rational design and scale-up applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number127233
Number of pages10
JournalBioresource Technology
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • Biochemical kinetics
  • Bioelectrochemical system
  • Buckingham's Pi theorem
  • Mechanistic model
  • Microbial electrochemical system

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