University of Surrey - Updates of the advancements of work

Our partner, University of Surrey has been working intensively in the activities related to our GREENER project and here are some major advancements of their work: 

1. Development of Microbial Electrolysis Cells for the simultaneous chromium removal and dye decolourisation in dye processing effluent.

At Uni Surrey, we have developed a laboratory-scale device based on microbial bioelectrochemistry, which can help to clean a specific type of industrial wastewater (dye processing effluent), otherwise toxic and difficult to clean. The device is able to convert highlytoxic Cr(VI) found in the wastewater to its less hazardous elemental forms, while simultaneously removing toxic dyes from the wastewaters (up to >90%removal). The operational conditions and device components have been optimised to achieve rapid and effective removal of the contaminants. In this device, the amicrobial community uses electrons supplied to the system by an externally applied voltage. The community uses the electrons to chemically reduce the target pollutants. This consortium has been enriched inside the device for over a year, and its members have been characterised using metagenomic analysis.

 2. Development of Microbial Electrolysis Cell for the remediation of heavy-metal polluted wastewater

A second device, based on similar technology, was developed for the removal of metals from wastewater contaminated with a range of heavy metals. Removal efficiencies up to 99% were observed.