Mechanism of enhanced performance on a hybrid direct carbon fuel cell using sawdust biofuels

Shuangbin Li, Cairong Jiang, Juan Liu, Haoliang Tao, Xie Meng, Paul Connor, Jianing Hui, Shaorong Wang, Jianjun Ma, John T. S. Irvine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Biomass is expected to play a significant role in power generation in the near future. With the uprising of carbon fuel cells, hybrid direct carbon fuel cells (HDCFCs) show its intrinsic and incomparable advantages in the generation of clean energy with higher efficiency. In this study, two types of biomass treated by physical sieve and pyrolysis from raw sawdust are investigated on an anode-supported HDCFC. The structure and thermal analysis indicate that raw sawdust has well-formed cellulose I phase with very low ash. Electrochemical performance behaviors for sieved and pyrolyzed sawdust combined with various weight ratios of carbonate are compared in N2 and CO2 purge gas. The results show that the power output of sieved sawdust with 789 mWcm−2 is superior to that of pyrolyzed sawdust in CO2 flowing, as well as in N2 flowing. The anode reaction mechanism for the discrepancy of two fuels is explained and the emphasis is also placed on the modified oxygen-reduction cycle mechanism of catalytic effects of Li2CO3 and K2CO3 salts in promoting cell performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-16
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Power Sources
Early online date22 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2018


  • Hybrid direct carbon fuel cell
  • Sieved and pyrolyzed sawdust
  • Electrochemical performance
  • Reaction mechanism


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