NOW THAT’S FUNNY
As part of an innovation fair in Africa, four teenage girls invented a generator that runs on urine. One liter of urine can produce up to six hours of electricity.
I could have used that during my Sandy-related outage.
The girls, 14-year-olds Duro-Aina Adebola, Akindele Abiola, Faleke Oluwatoyin and 15-year-old Bello Eniola, presented their creation at Maker Faire Africa in Lagos. As explained on that website, it works like this:
Urine is put into an electrolytic cell, which separates out the hydrogen.
The hydrogen goes into a water filter for purification, which then gets pushed into the gas cylinder.
The gas cylinder pushes hydrogen into a cylinder of liquid borax, which is used to remove the moisture from the hydrogen gas.
This purified hydrogen gas is pushed into the generator.
The girls were going to keep this idea a secret, but a little of it leaked out. Maybe they could give a demonstration of this generator to the public. They could stream it live.
As reported on NBCnews.com, Gerardine Botte, a chemical engineer at Ohio University who invented the urea electrolysis process that the girls are using, suggested the girls could go forward and work with an engineer to further understand the process and its applications.
For instance, since wastewater plants are treating urea, perhaps the urea could be used to run the plant itself, making the plant more energy efficient.
As New Jersey and the region grapples with power outages, this seems like an idea we could use. After all, a lot of people still don’t have power, and they’re pissed about it.
The urine powered generator is a very creative and exciting idea. Each of those four teens is a real whiz.
Pam Lobley writes the “Now That’s Funny” column. Check out her blog: Better Living Through Chaos! Follow her on twitter @plobley.