Effect of Solution Composition on the Energy Production by Capacitive Mixing in Membrane-Electrode Assembly
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AuthorAhualli, Silvia; Fernández, M. Mar; Iglesias, Guillermo R.; Jiménez Olivares, María Luisa; Liu, Fei; Vagterfeld, Martijn; Delgado, Ángel V.
American Chemical Society
Activated carbon particlesBlue energyCapacitive energy extractionDonnan potentialIonic exchange membranesMultivalent solutions
SponsorshipThe research leading to these results received funding from the European Union 7th Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under agreement No. 256868. Further financial support from Junta de Andalucia, Spain (PE2012-FQM 694) is also acknowledged. One of us, M.M.F., received financial support throughan FPU grant from the Universityof Granada.
In this work we consider the extent to which the presence of multi-valent ions in solution modifies the equilibrium and dynamics of the energy production in a capacitive cell built with ion-exchange membranes in contact with high surface area electrodes. The cell potential in open circuit (OCV) is controlled by the difference between both membrane potentials, simulated as constant volume charge regions. A theoretical model is elaborated for steady state OCV, first in the case of monovalent solutions, as a reference. This is compared to the results in multi-ionic systems, containing divalent cations in concentrations similar to those in real sea water. It is found that the OCV is reduced by about 25 % (as compared to the results in pure NaCl solutions) due to the presence of the divalent ions, even in low concentrations. Interestingly, this can be related to the “uphill” transport of such ions against their concentration gradients. On the contrary, their effect on the dynamics of the cell potential is negligible in the case of highly charged membranes. The comparison between model predictions and experimental results shows a very satisfactory agreement, and gives clues for the practical application of these recently introduced energy production methods.