Pee is for power

The water in urine can be a source of hydrogen for electrical generators

By Sid Perkins, 15:36 PM May 16, 2013

Adebola Duro-Aina (left), Oluwatoyin Faleke (center) and Zainab Bello (right) designed a system that uses urine to produce a fuel. Generators that run on this fuel, rather than gasoline, would avoid spewing carbon monoxide, a toxic pollutant. Credit: Patrick Thornton, SSP

To the body, urine is a waste. But to society, it could be a major resource, reports a trio of student inventors from Nigeria. They developed a system to produce fuel from urine. They do this by breaking down the water in urine to get hydrogen and oxygen. That hydrogen is a powerful source of energy. It’s also clean and readily available, the teens note.

In some parts of the developing world, electricity is not available all day. In other regions, its availability is unpredictable. “Where...

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