Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.3389/fmicb.2019.00866
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) Biophotovoltaics: green power generation from sunlight and water
Author Tschörtner, J.; Lai, B. ORCID logo ; Krömer, J.O.
Source Titel Frontiers in Microbiology
Year 2019
Department SOMA
Volume 10
Page From art. 866
Language englisch
Keywords ophotovoltaics; Cyanobacteria; Microbial fuel cell; bioelectrochemical system; Photosynthesis; extracellular electron transfer; photo-microbial fuel cell
Abstract Biophotovoltaics is a relatively new discipline in microbial fuel cell research. The basic idea is the conversion of light energy into electrical energy using photosynthetic microorganisms. The microbes will use their photosynthetic apparatus and the incoming light to split the water molecule. The generated protons and electrons are harvested using a bioelectrochemical system. The key challenge is the extraction of electrons from the microbial electron transport chain into a solid state anode. On the cathode a corresponding electrochemical counter reaction will consume the protons and electrons, e.g. through the oxygen reduction to water, or hydrogen formation. In this review, we are aiming to summarize the current state of the art and point out some limitation. We put a specific emphasis on Cyanobacteria, as these microbes are considered future workhorses for photobiotechnology and are currently the most widely applied microbes in biophotovoltaics research. Current progress in biophotovoltaics is limited by very low current outputs of the devices while a lack of comparability and standardization of the experimental set-up hinders a systematic optimization of the systems. Nevertheless, the fundamental questions of redox homeostasis in phototrophs and the potential to directly harvest light energy from a highly efficient photosystem, rather than through oxidation of inefficiently produced biomass are highly relevant aspects of biophotovoltaics.
Persistent UFZ Identifier
Tschörtner, J., Lai, B., Krömer, J.O. (2019):
Biophotovoltaics: green power generation from sunlight and water
Front. Microbiol. 10 , art. 866 10.3389/fmicb.2019.00866