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酵母能满足植入器械的能量需求 - China Medical Device Manufacturer
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Wed, January 17th, 2018

2009年5月CMDM电子快讯 » 技术新知
酵母能满足植入器械的能量需求

By: Heather Thompson

酵母驱动燃料电池可以替代起搏器内的电池。

以人类血液中的葡萄糖为能源的酵母细胞可形成生物微机电系统,为植入器械提供动力。这些生生不息的动力能够自我再生,因而起搏器之类植入器械在正常使用寿命内无需更换电池。

温哥华英属哥伦比亚大学的一个研究小组,通过将酵母细胞包封在柔性胶囊中,开发出了这种超小型微生物燃料电池。同时还说明这种燃料电池可以从一滴人血浆中产生能量。

这种酿酒酵母可以将储存在血流中葡萄糖内的化学能转化为电能。经过微加工的聚二甲硅氧烷 (PDMS) 微生物燃料电池内包括电极和酵母。电池的正极和负极由Nafion 117质子交换膜分隔开。在这些电极表面1.2 1.0cm的区域内,共有70,000多个8微米高的微柱结构。燃料电池的原型面积为15mm2,厚1.4mm。

该燃料电池质地柔软,具有生物相容性结构。仅利用15l的血液,其最大开路电位 (OCP) 即可达488.1mV,最大电流密度为30.2A/cm2,最大功率密度为401.2nW/cm2

该燃料电池连续工作60分钟的平均开路电压为297.4mV,平均电流密度为4.3A/cm2,平均功率密度为2.4nW/cm2(负载为1 kΩ)。据该项研究的作者Mu Chiao介绍,手表运转所需的能量级约为40nW。

如果利用电容将能量储存起来,该燃料电池足以驱动一些装置。此外,还可将酵母进行基因改良,以提高其输出功率。

不过Chiao指出,挑战仍然存在。例如,研究小组正关注如何让酵母细胞健康生长,并使废物排出体外的问题。否则,有害物质可能也会释放到血流中。

该研究成果已发表在2008年12月微电子系统杂志《Microelectrical Systems》上。


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