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Monday, July 20, 2009

Urine-Powered Cars Coming Soon?

A scientist has developed a catalyst that can extract hydrogen from urine and says it could be used to power hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in the near future. Garadine Botte hasn’t received much federal funding for her project, though she’s got some people in the Department of Defense interested. Now soldiers can work as a team to cool their overheated truck and then fuel it up.

One of hydrogen’s biggest stumbling blocks to use as an alternative fuel is the amount of energy needed to produce it. And then there’s the matter of distributing it. Botte says her gadget eliminates such problems because it’s small enough to integrate into an automobile. Urine is also readily available — your body produces two to three liters of it each day, and it is the most abundant form of waste on the planet. We could treat waste water while fueling our cars.

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