During the last weeks, start-up phase and integration followed prototype construction. Anaerobic digestion start-up phase has been carried out at GURAK facilities while microbial fuel cell start-up has been carried out at LEITAT facilities in order to minimise the impact of equipment shipment and installation on electrogenic bacteria cultures.
Furthermore, the integration of both sub-systems has been carried out by IDENER and the SCADA visualisation and control system has been deployed. This way, the microbial fuel cells can be operated using the effluent from the partial anaerobic digestion of real wastewater treatment plant sludge. Such sludge is a mixture of primary and secondary sludge and is directly fed to the system from the sludge storage unit of GURAK.
During the following months the prototype will continue its operation in order to retrieve the maximum amount of data in order to fully characterise and optimise the complete system.