A Urine Powered Generator

A urine powered generator

Possibly one of the more unexpected products at Maker Faire Africa this year in Lagos is a urine powered generator, created by four girls. The girls are Duro-Aina Adebola (14), Akindele Abiola (14), Faleke Oluwatoyin (14) and Bello Eniola (15).

1 Liter of urine gives you 6 hours of electricity.

The system 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.

Along the whole way there are one-way valves for security, but let’s be honest that this is something of an explosive device…

Comments
168 Responses to “A Urine Powered Generator”
  1. surendar says:

    good innovation, done in european or us grt discovery but in africa none to regonise . still thanks for share this info, congrats to all for innovators.

  2. victor says:

    Genial, felicitaciones.

  3. BB says:

    Sounds like another Nigerian scam!!!!!

  4. from USA says:

    Well done! Keep up the good work. What wonderful examples these resourceful young leaders are setting for girls everywhere.

  5. david says:

    Hola, desde chile las felicito revisare en detalle su proyecto…excelente…sigan trabajando…no najen las manos….

  6. Trane says:

    I’m so tired of “skeptics” always “poo-poo-ing” the accomplishment of powering a device with something other than fossil fuels. FIRST OFF, it’s an amazing accomplishment to fuel a generator with urine, regardless of the need to have electricity at the front end for electrolysis…. maybe you can use solar or manual crank generation. SECONDLY, the success is in converting human waste into useful power, regardless of the need for liquid borax and electrical current at the start… you end up with less urine and more power!

    Congratulations to these beautiful and intelligent women!

  7. Snoppy says:

    You would generate more electricity by pissing into an impeller and generating electricity like a waterwheel. Of course, with all things it’s the thought that counts and not the results.

  8. Bill says:

    No Way! Bogus! There is no way this contraption produces enough hydrogen to directly feed the generator to replace the energy which was formerly provided by atomized gasoline. This is bogus.

  9. Tom says:

    Girls, I’m proud of you.

  10. Nafikile Mwangomile says:

    very gifted girls,they need more encouragement on this.bravooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Jon Haines says:

    Just watch the BBC News Team pick this up as a “revolutionary” story… I’m impressed with the girls efforts but energy doesn’t come from nowhere. Many of the more astute comments here highlight the need for electricity to electrolyse the urine, others point to various other websites who have already highlighted the promise of H power from urea (‘though to claim the major constituent of urine is urea is wrong – it is still predominantly water!) so this is hardly revolutionary. The girls could perhaps have indicated that the source of energy for the electrolysis comes from solar or wind generation, which would help make their case stronger – at least you can store hydrogen, whereas you cannot store wind or solar energy… Good luck and keep working on it, but it is not yet the revolution the headline leads you to believe in.

  12. Bryan N. Tegomoh says:

    I BELIEVE IN AFRICANS IN WAYS THAT DRIVES ME CRAZY. THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING F GREAT THINGS TO COME.

    LETS KEEP ON, WITH OUR INNOVATIVE SPIRIT AND CREATIVE POTENTIAL.

    PLEASE LET OUR YOUNG PEOPLE BE AWAY OF THE CHALLENGES AHEAD AND WORK HARD TO SECURE THE FUTURE OF AFRICA.

    GOD BLESS!!!

    BRYAN T.

  13. Blessing says:

    brilliant kids, God bless them and give them more revelation!

  14. dangerous dan says:

    My colleague built a gassifyer that uses biomass pellets as fuel. Once the 5.5kVA generator runs well enough to plug in a 2kW kettle, as a result of producing enough wood gas, the generator’s output drastically drops as the kettle starts boiling water. The generator stopped once or twice during these tests because the gas was not pure enough in large enough quantities to consistently provide fuel to the genny, so back to the drawing board. I suppose when you only have to light up a 40W incandescent light, it’s a different story. I suppose you would need copious amounts of urine being processed quick enough to provide enough H to run the genny under a constant load bearing. Cool project though

  15. Max says:

    I want see a video!
    Seeing is believing!

  16. D D says:

    This is just a HO generator using urine as the salt to conduct the electricity needed for electrolysis. Truth is it it will probably work but not at a savings on the fuel. The electricity needed to generate the electrolysis would be more than the fuel costs to power the generator. I actually doubt if these young ladies are responsible for this technology, sorry my guess is that this is just another nigerian scam.

  17. Pol (Belgium) says:

    Good work !

  18. Great invention! It will convert waste into energy and benefit the people of world.

  19. Great Invention! It will save our fuel and will benefit people of world.

  20. Gloria Dulan-Wilson says:

    First of all, my congratulations to my beautiful African sisters for a job well done. When I was a kid growing up in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma/USA, we had to participate in National Science Fairs and come up with inventions and concepts using scientific means. It was then that I learned Urine was used in a multitude of products, including most of the leading cosmetics, paint, pigments and medicines. But the concept of using it in lieu of gas, petroleum or other petrochemical products is pure genius. Kudos, My Young Sisters!!!
    I know about 300,000 people in New York and New Jersey, victims of hurricane Sandy, who would gratefully pay for a product like this, and would no doubt beat a pathway to your doors to purchase one. So let me give you a little heads up GET YOUR INVENTION PATENTED BEFORE THEY SWOOP IT UP. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR MONEY SET – so that when they comes to you – as they surely will – you deal with them from a business perspective. Likewise, when dealing with your own countrymen, make sure they are dealing fairly as well. Good luck – this is a great time for building a manufacturing plant to begin to fabricate new generators to be distributed locally, throughout Africa, and internationally. We all know that most of the genius and ingenuity comes from Africa. Stay Blessed & ECLECTICALLY BLACK, Gloria Dulan-Wilson

  21. Daniel Press says:

    This could be real. In 2009 there was a paper reporting an energy requirement of 37.5 Wh/g for hydrogen production from urea using a Nickel catalyst [1]. The calorific value of hydrogen is 39.4 Wh/g. This gives nearly 2 Wh/g of energy. This is not very efficient but it is real!

    1 – “Urea electrolysis: direct hydrogen production from urine”. Bryan K. Boggs, Rebecca L. King and Gerardine G. Botte. Chem. Commun., 2009, 4859–4861.

  22. Really Really amazing invention. See government you can not stop us to producing more urine lol

  23. kvssarma says:

    As many friends have commented I feel one need to count the power input for electrolysis of urine? using fresh water with a pinch of salt in place of urine should not make any difference in my opinion.ADDITION OF SALT improves conduction Try it out.Load the generator to a higher wattage than the electrolysis wattage.If it sustains it is great otherwise it is of little use. The other way is use genset.power after initial start up (remove the external power )for electrolysis and there need to be excess power to consider this as invention.However the effort is good.

  24. Sarah says:

    I think it’s a really amazing what you’ve made. If you could generate it on a much bigger scale that would be great. Have you seen http://www.loremipsumgenerator.co.uk? It’s an online text creator that you can use as to create text for webpages, place holding text that is!

  25. Your mode of describing the whole thing in this piece of writing is genuinely fastidious, all be capable of easily understand it, Thanks a lot.

  26. Kristopher says:

    Ӏ’m very pleased to discover this site. I want to to thank you for ones time just for this fantastic read!! I definitely enjoyed every part of it and I have you book marked to see new things on your blog.

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  8. […] debuted their pee-powered contraption at Maker Faire Africa in Lagos, Nigeria, CNET reports.The Maker Faire’s blog summarizes how it works:Urine is put into an electrolytic cell, which cracks the urea into nitrogen, water, and hydrogen. […]

  9. […] to the Maker Faire blog, the girls’ invention takes the urine and uses urea electrolysis to generate hydrogen, which can […]

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