Microbial fuel cells harness the power of bacteria and convert energy released in metabolic reactions into electrical energy. The  cell consists of two electrodes separated by a semi-permeable membrane submersed in an electrolyte solution. The bacteria break down food wastes and sewage to generate an electric current and continue to replicate producing power indefinitely as long as there is a food source from which get nourished. The cell is divided into two halves: aerobic and anaerobic. The aerobic half has a positively charged electrode and is bubbled with oxygen, much like a fish tank. The anaerobic half does not have oxygen, allowing a negatively charged electrode to act as the electron receptor for the bacterial processes. The chambers are separated by a semi-permeable membrane to keep oxygen out of the anaerobic chamber while still allowing hydrogen ions (H+) pass through. (Mercer 2010)

 

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