Cobalt oxides-sheathed cobalt nano flakes to improve surface properties of carbonaceous electrodes utilized in microbial fuel cells

Hend Omar Mohamed, Mohammad Ali Abdelkareem, M. Obaid, Su Hyeong Chae, Mira Park*, Hak Yong Kim, Nasser A.M. Barakat

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


A novel nanoflakes of cobalt sheathed with cobalt oxide is electrodeposited on four different carbonaceous anodes; carbon cloth (CC), carbon paper (CP) graphite (G) and activated carbon (AC), to introduce as high-performance anodes of microbial fuel cell (MFC). Interestingly, characterizations results indicated that novel metallic nanoflakes that sheathed by a thin layer of cobalt oxide were formed on the surface of the different anode materials. Moreover, using a simple and effective electrodeposition technique for fabricating of cobalt/cobalt oxide nanoflakes is introduced to overcome the hydrophobicity and the interfacial electron transfer of the anodes. The thin layer of cobalt/cobalt oxide nanoflakes significantly enhanced the microbial adhesion, the wettability of the anode surface and decrease the electron transfer resistance. Alternatively, the toxicity risk of the pure cobalt is overcome by the cobalt oxide layer. The application of the modified anodes in an air-cathode MFCs fed by industrial wastewater resulted in a significant improving in cell performance for the different anode materials. Where, the observed increasing in the power was 103, 137, 173 and 71% for the CC, CP, G and AC electrodes, respectively. This proposed treatment technique represented a high-performance, excellent microbial adhesion, easy fabrication and scale-up anodes for MFC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)497-506
Number of pages10
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MISP) (Grant number 2014R1A4A1008140) and the Commercializations Promotion Agency for R&D Outcomes (COMPA) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning (MSIP) (2016K000206).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier B.V.


  • Carbonaceous anodes
  • Cobalt electrodeposition
  • Cobalt oxide
  • Microbial fuel cell
  • Nano flakes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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