Urine is more powerful than you think… Researchers at the University of the West of England, Bristol have developed a Microbial Fuel Cell technology for urinals - allowing people to charge smartphones with pure pee power.
So how on Earth does this work? And what the hell are Microbial Fuel Cells? Well, it’s a pretty significant innovation that uses microorganisms to turn organic matter into an electrical current.
The microbes placed onto these cells produce electricity as a by-product, meaning the more urine they’re sprayed with, the more power they create.
Now, long time readers will know that UWE have been working on this for a while. I even wrote about this “Urine-tricity” way back in 2013 (I’m even disappointed in myself for that one).
Back then, the technology was really in its infancy, being able to only provide power to a feature phone, but as explained in their journal Applied Energy, they were able to give a Samsung Galaxy smartphone enough power to make three hours of phone calls with just 600 milliletres of pee – equivalent to one toilet break’s worth.
However, don’t expect to top up the tank completely when you empty yours… Charging a battery to full capacity requires 4.2 litres of urine (that’s 1.1 gallons), so unless you have the bladder of Gods, that’s considerably more than a single person could ever generate!
“We are excited to announce several global firsts - this development was possible by employing a new design of MFCs that allowed scaling-up without power density losses,” Professor Leropoulos, leader of the team explains.
“Although it was demonstrated in the past that a basic mobile phone could be charged by MFCs, the present study goes beyond this to show how, simply using urine, an MFC system successfully charges a modern-day smartphone.”
This paints a rather exciting future in sustainable charging – it’s a fuel source you will literally never run out of, and it’s extremely safe to use…as far as we know.
I’ll just say to the unlucky person (if there is one) that “urine” for a shocking surprise… I’ll grab my coat.
I’m faced with a choice… Which music streaming service is the one for me – Spotify or Apple Music? Choices like this shouldn’t be difficult, but yet I stand amongst a smorgasbord of user hostile pros & cons that really shouldn’t exist.
For the next two years, Britain is all about space industry, data protection and automated electric vehicles.
Meet Shimon - a four-armed robot that composes and performs its own Marimba music using artificial intelligence.
E3 2017 was packed with huge video game announcements across a series of vast of press events - but I bet you probably didn’t hear/see these five titles that dropped during the week.
As a fan of the original, the biggest story to come out of Apple’s packed WWDC conference was the stealth announcement of Monument Valley II.
My heart goes out to the victims and their families after these truly reprehensible atrocities. I just have one thing to say about the response to what has happened. Theresa, the internet is not to blame.
A business school in Paris will start using facial recognition technology, to make sure students are paying attention in class… Wave goodbye to those all-important lecture naps!
Don’t trust that fitness tracker data… While most are good at measuring heart rate, research shows they are poor at measuring calories burned.
I am the Founder and Editor-in-chief of New Rising Media. You can follow me on Twitter @MrJasonEngland.