Mustari Khanaum (she/her/hers)


I am a Deputy Secretary of Ministry of Agriculture, Bangladesh. I have done my Bachelor and Master's from University of Dhaka, Bangladesh in Geology. I have performed a research work titled as “Hydro-geochemical Evaluation of the Shallow Aquifer of Dhaka City” in my Master's. After that I have achieved my second Master's in Population Sciences from the same University and my research title was “Effect of Age at First Birth of Women on the Health Status of Infant”. In 2005 I joined Bangladesh Civil Service. I completed my 3rd Master's degree in 2011 in Public Administration (Policy) from Flinders University, Australia and my research title was “Potential and Pitfalls of Social and Environmental Policy Pertaining ICTs”. I came here on Fall 2018 for doing my PhD in ECS and currently working in Dr. Shafiqur Rahman’s lab. My research topic is “Wastewater treatment and electricity generation from sugar beet processing wastewater using microbial fuel cell”.


Microbial fuel cell (MFC) is a treatment system that can produce electricity and treat wastewater simultaneously using exoelectrogens as biocatalyst. Microbial fuel cell (MFC) is a treatment system that can produce electricity and treat wastewater (WW) simultaneously using exoelectrogens as biocatalyst. Exoelectrogen is an active microorganism that oxidizes the organic substrates in an anaerobic anode compartment and produces electrons and protons, and consequently helps in generating electricity. Besides producing electricity, MFC is also effective in removing nitrates, sulfide, and sulfates, etc. coupled with the production of biohydrogen.

     In MFC, microorganisms oxidize organic matters of the substrate, and it produces electrons and protons. Electrons are conveyed from a negative terminal (anode) to the positive terminal (cathode) through a good conductive material (e.g. copper wire, which is a low resistance material) for easy flow of electrons (Fig-1). The anode and cathode compartment are separated by a cation exchange membrane (CEM), which allows protons to move from anode to cathode chamber, diffused with oxygen, and produce water. Therefore, it is essential to ensure the presence of oxygen in the cathode chamber.
     Bioprocessing industries such as sugarbeet processing, use large quantity of fresh water and generate enormous amount of wastewater. Treatment of wastewater is expensive, but they also contains different pollutants and metals. If they are discharged in a nearby pond or lagoon without treatment, it may cause water pollution and environmental concerns. MFC treatment might be a viable option to treat wastewater and reduce some of the pollutants. In North Dakota, USA, there are several sugarbeet processing industries and generate wastewater, which has high chemical oxygen demand (COD) and organic matter. Both are needed for the MFC. If the research works properly, it will reduce wastewater treatment cost for beet industry. Moreover, they can reuse the treated water produced by MFC and concurrently they can generate electricity.

Contact Mustari here!

Top of page