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Miniaturized enzymatic biofuel cells (EBFCs) with high cell performance are promising candidates for powering next-generation implantable medical devices. Here, we report a closed-loop theoretical and experimental study on a micro EBFC system based on three-dimensional (3D) carbon micropillar arrays coated with reduced graphene oxide (rGO), carbon nanotubes (CNTs), and a biocatalyst composite. The fabrication process of this system combines the top–down carbon microelectromechanical systems (C-MEMS) technique to fabricate the 3D micropillar array platform and bottom–up electrophoretic deposition (EPD) to deposit the reduced rGO/CNTs/enzyme onto the electrode surface. The Michaelis–Menten constant KM of 2.1 mM for glucose oxidase (GOx) on the rGO/CNTs/GOx bioanode was obtained, which is close to the KM for free GOx. Theoretical modelling of the rGO/CNT-based EBFC system via finite element analysis was conducted to predict the cell performance and efficiency. The experimental results from the developed rGO/CNT-based EBFC showed a maximum power density of 196.04 µW cm−2 at 0.61 V, which is approximately twice the maximum power density obtained from the rGO-based EBFC. The experimental power density is noted to be 71.1% of the theoretical value.


Originally published in Microsystems & Nanoengineering.

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