Power generation from cheese whey using enzymatic fuel cell

Han Suk Choi, Xiaoguang Yang, Dong Sup Kim, Ji Hyun Yang, Sung Ok Han, Chulhwan Park, Seung Wook Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


As an organic waste of dairy manufacture, cheese whey was considered to be an environmental pollutant because of its high lactose content. Reutilization of lactose from cheese whey for power generation could be a novel solution for dairy industry. In this study, lactose was demonstrated as a fuel for power generation by enzymatic fuel cell (EFC) using cellobiose dehydrogenase (CDH). The enzyme was immobilized and characterized on the mediator modified electrode. To enhance the performance, various factors of this EFC system such as enzyme concentration, reaction pH, and initial concentration of lactose were investigated. The maximum current and power density were obtained at CDH concentration of 47.07 mg/ml and 100 mM lactose at pH 4.5 for EFC. The open circuit voltage and maximum power density of the EFC at optimum conditions were 0.52 V and 2,973 μW/cm2, respectively. Additionally, the cheese whey from dairy industry was directly demonstrated in this EFC and power density of 1,839 μW/cm2 was obtained. These results indicated positive prospects of cheese whey for the application of power generation, which demonstrated the feasibility of the organic waste from diary manufacture to produce a clean product.

Original languageEnglish
Article number120181
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd


  • Cellobiose dehydrogenase
  • Cheese whey
  • Enzymatic fuel cell
  • Lactose
  • Power generation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Environmental Science
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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