Mobile Bioelectric Filtration System (MBFS): Accelerated Anaerobic Digestion via Bio-Electrochemical Reactions

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W56HZV-11-C-0298
Agency Tracking Number: A111-051-0780
Amount: $149,577.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: A11-051
Solicitation Number: 2011.1
Small Business Information
21 South Street, Somerville, MA, -
DUNS: 784797412
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Patrick Kiely
 Vice President of R&D
 (617) 307-1755
Business Contact
 Matthew Silver
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Phone: (617) 307-1755
Research Institution
Current United States military contingency operations require more sustainable Forward Operating Bases (FOBs). Major problems for FOBs include the supply of fuel and water and the removal and treatment of wastewater. Microbial Fuel Cells and Bio-electrochemical systems utilize newly discovered electrically active microbes to generate direct electric current and other value-added products while treating wastewater. In this project, IntAct Labs will develop and demonstrate a novel wastewater treatment system known as a Mobile Bioelectric Filtration System (MBFS) which will convert the energy present in wastewater streams into methane, electricity and treated H2O To date most research into bio-electrochemical systems for wastewater treatment has focused on electricity production. This often has the unwanted result of producing biogas. Building on recent National Science Foundation research , the proposed system will utilize bio-electrochemical principals with the explicit goal of enhancing biogas production and treatment rates. The system will comprise of an accelerated anaerobic digester, adapted with internal electrodes and corresponding air-cathodes. This innovation removes feedback inhibition exerted on methanogenic populations by the build-up of fermentative by-products. Electricity generated from this system will contribute to power a downstream membrane bio-filtration system supplying a readily usable water source. Biogas can be forwarded to either a methane fuel cell or combined heat and power engine, thereby producing electricity and providing waste heat for optimizing digester performance.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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