Enhance cathodic capacitance to eliminate power overshoot in microbial fuel cells

Dongliang Wang, Jingping Hu, Shaogang Hu, Longsheng Wu, Jikun Xu, Huijie Hou, Jiakuan Yang, Sha Liang, Keke Xiao, Bingchuan Liu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Power overshoot that presents in the power curves of microbial fuel cells (MFCs) is one of the main reasons for the deterioration of MFC performance over the high current region. In this research, the mechanisms of power overshoot were investigated with single-chamber MFCs integrated with carbon cloth anode and Fe/N-doped carbon cathodes possessing varied capacitance properties. It was revealed that insufficient anodic current produced at high potential is responsible for power overshoot generation, which could be eliminated with higher capacitive cathode (7.79 F) compared with the one with lower capacitive cathode (3.74 F). This elimination can be ascribed to the improvement of MFC capacitance induced by cathode capacitance, which was proved by MFC charge-discharge test. However, cathode capacitance can only increase the MFC capacitance to a limited extent, as power overshoot can still occur when applying long stabilization time for polarization test. [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1659-1667
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Solid State Electrochemistry
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Capacitance
  • Microbial fuel cells
  • Polarization
  • Power density
  • Power overshoot


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