The music mogul Jay-Z has teamed up with Duracell and Powermat for an initiative dubbed the ‘24 Hour Power System’, a wireless solution for charging the smartphones. The ‘24 Hour Power System’ claims to be portable enough to juice up mobile devices while on the go. The charging device will allow users to charge their […]
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Product is at good sales only when they are manufactured in pocket size or downsizing trend. People are attracted towards a product and they think to buy any of the gadgets not only when they are just efficient but also when they are slim, thin and small. Pros: a) The thing that make like the […]
If you are bored and tensed of your normal crappy laptop speakers and looking for an inexpensive solution for that, then Logitech has a good answer. The Logitech had just launched it’s Z110 stereo portable speakers for the laptops, the Logitech LZ110 portable speakers will go on to the sale starting from this month and […]
Urine-powered cars, homes and personal electronic devices could be available in six months with new technology developed by scientists from Ohio University.
Using a nickel-based electrode, the scientists can create large amounts of cheap hydrogen from urine that could be burned or used in fuel cells. “One cow can provide enough energy to supply hot water for 19 houses,” said Gerardine Botte, a professor at Ohio University developing the technology. “Soldiers in the field could carry their own fuel.”
Pee power is based on hydrogen, the most common element in the universe but one that has resisted efforts to produce, store, transport and use economically.
Storing pure hydrogen gas requires high pressure and low temperature. New nanomaterials with high surface areas can adsorb hydrogen, but have yet to be produced on a commercial scale.
Chemically binding hydrogen to other elements, like oxygen to create water, makes it easier to store and transport, but releasing the hydrogen when it’s needed usually requires financially prohibitive amounts of electricity.
By attaching hydrogen to another element, nitrogen, Botte and her colleagues realized that they can store hydrogen without the exotic environmental conditions, and then release it with less electricity, 0.037 Volts instead of the 1.23 Volts needed for water.
One molecule of urea, a major component of urine, contains four atoms of hydrogen bonded to two atoms of nitrogen. Stick a special nickel electrode into a pool of urine, apply an electrical current, and hydrogen gas is released.
Botte’s current prototype measures 3x3x1 inch and can produce up to 500 milliwatts of power. However, Botte and her colleagues are actively trying to commercialize several larger versions of the technology.
A fuel cell, urine-powered vehicle could theoretically travel 90 miles per gallon. A refrigerator-sized unit could produce one kilowatt of energy for about $5,000, although this price is a rough estimate, says Botte.
“The waste products from say a chicken farm could be used to produce the energy needed to run the farm,” said John Stickney, a chemist and professor at the University of Georgia.
For livestock farmers who are required by law to pool their animals’ waste, large scale prototypes could turn that urine into power within six months.
Smaller versions likely won’t be available until after that, so the average consumer probably shouldn’t start saving their pee just yet.
“It is not a solution for all our cars,” said Stickney, “but it is the kind of process which will find many applications and will make for a greener world.”
Photograph by Phillip Toledano
From Fast Company:
I’m standing next to a Croatian-born American genius in a half-empty office in Watertown, Massachusetts, and I’m about to be fried to a crisp. Or I’m about to witness the greatest advance in electrical science in a hundred years. Maybe both.
Either way, all I can think of is my electrician, Billy Sullivan. Sullivan has 11 tattoos and a voice marinated in Jack Daniels. During my recent home renovation, he roared at me when I got too close to his open electrical panel: “I’m the Juice Man!” he shouted. “Stay the hell away from my juice!”
He was right. Only gods mess with electrons. Only a fool would shoot them into the air. And yet, I’m in a conference room with a scientist who is going to let 120 volts fly out of the wall, on purpose.
“Don’t worry,” says the MIT assistant professor and a 2008 MacArthur genius-grant winner, Marin Soljacic (pronounced SOLE-ya-cheech), who designed the box he’s about to turn on. “You will be okay.”
Read more ….
From Scientific American:
Nuclear power–like most forms of electricity generation–carries inherent risks. Is it worth the minor chance of a major catastrophe?
On Feb. 16, 2002, the nuclear power plant called Davis–Besse on the shores of Lake Erie near Toledo, Ohio, shut down. On inspection, a pineapple-size section on the 6.63-inch- (16.84-centimeter-) thick carbon steel lid that holds in the pressurized, fission-heated water in the site’s sole reactor had been entirely eaten away by boric acid formed from a leak. The only thing standing between the escape of nuclear steam and a possible chain of events leading to a meltdown was an internal liner of stainless steel just three sixteenths of an inch (0.48 centimeter) thick that had slowly bent out about an eighth of an inch (0.32 centimeter) into the cavity due to the constant 2,200 pound-per–square-inch (155-kilogram-per-square-centimeter) pressure.
Read more ….