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Treatment of dyes in photo-consortium processes with power generation in microbial biocells

Grant number: 18/05454-3
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2019
Effective date (End): April 30, 2021
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Sanitary Engineering - Water Supply and Wastewater Treatment
Principal researcher:Adalgisa Rodrigues de Andrade
Grantee:Érica Janaina Rodrigues de Almeida
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (FFCLRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil


Resources scarcity and electricity demand have been dramatically increasing in last decades. In today's overpopulated and globalized world, the efficient removal of dyes from textile effluents is one of the most challenging environmental problems. Dye wastewater adversely affects the environment due to its immense color and toxicity. However, current wastewater treatment technologies have limitations due high cost of the energy to achieve the target conversion of wastewater needed. However, in the past years the microbial fuel cells technology has captured the attention of the scientific community introducing the possibility of the bioelectrocatalytic activity of microorganisms to convert the chemical energy present in organic substrates, or waste, into electrical energy. This technology relies on the capability of microorganisms to perform extracellular electron transfer and, exchange electrons with a solid electrode. Once the oxidation and the reduction processes are separated, the microorganisms are forced to use the electrodes as intermediates in the electron transfer-cascade process. Based on this background, the focus of this research is the development a treatment system of the azo dyes similar as Acid Orange 7 under the anaerobic condition, by the photo-consortium processes with power generation in microbial fuel cells. The subproducts of degradation of Acid Orange 7 can be more toxic than the original dye, causing damage to the metabolisms of the microorganisms present at the bioanode of the microbial fuel cell. It will expected that the presence of the photoanode will help in the degradation of these metabolites, and increasing the efficiency of energy generation with the additional flow of photonerated electrons. Analysis the acute toxicity will be conducted with the Artemia salina and Lactuca sativa, mutagenicity will be evaluated using the Salmonella/microsome Ames test and the genotoxicity by the single-cell gel electrophoresis assay (comet assay) in order to obtain the ability of the system to degrade and/or mineralize the azo dye Acid Orange 7.