Humans are capable of generating energy in so many different ways, it’s mind boggling! (And kind of Matrixy)
With advancements in technology being made every day, it could only be a matter of time until we are using energy sources generated by the craziest of methods.
Here’s just a few examples of how people can generate home and business energy, I must warn you, it gets a little bit gruesome!
Dead Heat For Homes And Businesses
This method of energy capturing has sparked a little controversy over the past few years with regards to whether generating heat from the cremation process can be considered ethical. Given the heat isn’t actually generated by the deceased; but from the process of cremation itself it’s doubtful it will affect the departed’s ability to rest in peace.
The process consists of a heat recovery system which is the process in which excess heat from a cremation is recycled to be used around the building housing it via various pipes and vents. This reduces running costs for crematorium owners as they have to pay less for their heating, a move which can also help mourners as prices charged for putting your loved ones to rest could be reduced by this energy saving measure. This part of the process has been reported to generate as much as £2,500 worth of heat per month and if collectively used by all approximately 300 crematoriums throughout the UK would generate a whopping £9 MILLION worth of heating per year!
It’s gross but fascinating!
Biogas Produced From Food Waste
We all do it. When meal time is encroaching and we’re in the mood for food, lots of it. Often we reach our stomachs capacity before finishing what’s on our plate, especially when on holiday and it’s all inclusive buffets at least three times a day! The organic waste that comes from day to day life in general is astonishing, even if we do clear our plates there’s still the factor of potato skins, apple cores, orange peels and various other food waste substances and what happens most of the time is this waste gets dumped in landfill to biodegrade along with the rest of our rubbish.
What if there was a way of giving these otherwise useless remainders a purpose again? Well, there is and it’s called biogas. Biogas is a combination of 60% Methane and 40% CO2 with traces of Hydrogen and Hydrogen Sulphide and can be used to heat our homes and businesses.
Disney World in America uses a process called Anaerobic Digestion to obtain biogas to assist with the running of its complex. They do this using this simple recipe:
1) Collect all food scraps/ waste, oils and grease from all food establishments
2) Transport the matter to a Bio Gas plant situated near by
3) Mix the concoction with Bio solids – This is the nutrient rich organic materials left over after sewage is treated
4) Feed the slop to micro organisms to excrete biogas
5) Collect the gas and the remaining solids become fertiliser so there is very little waste.
The amount of energy that can be collected from human waste is amazing, cost cutting and planet savings!
Get aBREAST Of Energy
At present there is titillating research being conducted into boob energy in an attempt to convert friction and kinetic energy made by breasts into useable power. There has already been some head way on the power of the breast as a business called Truimph in Japan have created a solar panel bra, the only problem is ladies would have to have the undergarment on show in order uncover its full potential.
A later development by Zhong Lin Wang of Georgia Tech seems slightly more promising as his method uses cheaply made and efficient nano wires that are said to be 1000th of the width of a strand of human hair. These wires rub together to convert mechanical energy into an electrical charge that could be used to power small devices. Problem is, how do you wash it without ruining it? Research into how to do this is underway as the gaps between the nano wires need to be maintained in order for the bra to function properly, which means repetitive cleansing could ruin the bra pretty easily.
It is a work in progress but you never know given how fast technology is advancing; your jubberlies could be powering your IPod sooner than you think.
Body Heat To Power Homes
Body heat from the tube collected through ventilation shafts is being used to heat homes and tackle fuel poverty. In London, £2.7million from Islington Council and £1million from the EU was invested into a scheme called the CELSIUS project. Its aim is to exhibit how energy efficiency and performance can be improved by utilising heat that would otherwise be allowed to disperse back into the
atmosphere from within cities. The project is the result of a partnership between Boris Johnson, Islington Council, UK Power Networks and Transport for London and was the first project of its kind within Europe. Boris Johnson is utilising this project is it is helping him to strive towards 2025 goals to reduce CO2 emissions by 60% and to produce 25% of London’s energy locally.
Let’s hope that objective isn’t just a load of hot air!
How To Generate Energy By Being Alive
Using technological advancements we can capture the electricity that the human body produces just by being alive! E.g. There are now pace makers that have been developed to run off the energy created by your heart beat and muscular spasms. That’s some smart tech!
You can now also charge your phone by breathing using a device called an AIRE Mask that uses tiny wind turbines to collect the wind power generated when we inhale and exhale. The energy is then transferred to your device via a cable.
Inventor Joco Paulo Lammoglia from Brazil made the device in an attempt to help each and every one of us to reduce our carbon footprint as well as giving us the ability to access the consistent energy that could be created by us, 24/7. The device can be used when doing almost anything from running to sleeping to watching TV; you can charge your devices whenever and wherever you like using yourself as a battery. It’s very intriguing to say the least.
The Energy In Adult Nappies
Unfortunately no one can escape the test of time and eventually people find it more difficult to do simple things like get to the toilet, hence the demand for adult nappies. Given the ageing population in the UK and considering there is now a population of 22.7 million people aged 50+ there will be an increasing amount of issues arising regarding how to dispose of the undignified in an environmentally friendly manner.
Super Faiths, Japan is a business that recycles the waste from diapers and believes that burning them as fuel is a much better use than them going to landfill. The SFD Recycling plant fragments and sterilises nappies them compresses them into pellets that are manufactured to fuel large biomass boilers.
These machines are big enough to cater for the demand of hospitals and retirement homes as of yet, however it’s likely they will be looking to expand their services to cover nurseries and schools, adopting the same process for the baby and toddler population.
If adopted by the UK, this process could tap into the unprecedented energy that could be generated in this way from the approximately 20,000 care homes, hundreds of hospitals, schools and nurseries alike.
Given all of the above weird and wonderful methods of generating energy, it’s clear to see that there’s more we could be doing to prevent waste and compile energy for day to day use. One method is evidently not enough to comply with the modern day demand but a combination of these methods along with other weird alternatives could help to pave the way for a brighter future for all of us.
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