Objective: Palladised cells of Desulfovibrio desulfuricans and Shewanella oneidensis have been reported as fuel cell electrocatalysts but growth at scale may be unattractive/costly; we have evaluated the potential of using E. coli, using H2/formate for Pd-nanoparticle manufacture.
Results: Using ‘bio-Pd’ made under H2 (20 wt%) cyclic voltammograms suggested electrochemical activity of bio-NPs in a native state, attributed to proton adsorption/desorption. Bio-Pd prepared using formate as the electron donor gave smaller, well separated NPs; this material showed no electrochemical properties, and hence little potential for fuel cell use using a simple preparation technique. Bio-Pd on S. oneidensis gave similar results to those obtained using E. coli.
Conclusion: Bio-Pd is sufficiently conductive to make an E. coli-derived electrochemically active material on intact, unprocessed bacterial cells if prepared at the expense of H2, showing potential for fuel cell applications using a simple one-step preparation method.
- E. coli
- Electrochemical activity
- Fuel cell
- Hydrogen production