In the not-so-distant future, you’ll probably be able to take a leak, or ease yourself, or drop some in your fuel tank to get that electric motor spinning, because scientists have figured out a material that could create that fuel cell which transforms urine into electricity. Cheap electricity.
Shanwen Tao and Rong Lan, from the Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh have received a $203,000 grant to develop the urine fuel cell and start their own spin-off company, Carbamide Power System.
Urine could constitute a much safer solution than hydrogen, much cleaner and non-toxic than methanol and could offer an abundant source of energy… from obvious reasons.
Photo via flickr
“We’re only at prototype stage at present, but if this renewable material can be used as a commercially viable and environmentally friendly energy source, we will be absolutely delighted, and many people around the world will benefit,” Tao said.
“Growing up in rural eastern China I was aware of the use of urea as an agricultural fertilizer. When I became a chemist and was looking at fuel cell development I thought of using it in the process,” he also explained.
I guess… oil companies will be pretty “pissed off” when they’ll see this implemented in cars everywhere, as a backup solution.