A Cellphone Powered by Urine
Published on: 12th Jan 2006
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
Physicists in Singapore have developed a battery that can be powered by human urine. Aimed at disposable health care kits for use in rural areas we naturally couldn't pass up the opportunity to comment on such a product being used for those "emergency" phone calls when your conventional battery had died. Led by Dr Ki Bang Lee a team at Singapore's Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology developed a paper battery which is designed to be cheap to produce and use urine as its power charge source.Time to recharge the battery
Using 0.2 ml of urine, the team were able to generate a voltage of around 1.5 Volts with a corresponding maximum power of 1.5 mW. Battery performance can also be adjusted by using different construction materials.
"Our urine-activated battery would be integrated into biochip systems for healthcare diagnostic applications," says Lee. He envisions a world where people will easily be able to monitor their health at home, seeking medical attention only when necessary. "These fully-integrated biochip systems have a huge market potential," adds Lee.
The battery is made from a layer of paper that is soaked in copper chloride (CuCl) and then sandwiched between strips of magnesium and copper. The final product has dimensions of 6cm x 3cm, and a thickness of just 1 mm.
The research was published in the Institute of Physics' Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering.