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July 12, 2018

Meet the 4 Black Teens Who Created a Generator That Uses Urine As Fuel

Back in 2012, four teenage girls from Africa, who were just 14 and 15-year olds at that time, invented a generator that is powered by what seems to be an unlikely source of electricity: urine. Their invention was highlighted by Maker Faire Africa which supports Afrigadget-type innovations, inventions and initiatives.
The 4 girls -- Duro-Aina Adebola, Akindele Abiola, and Faleke Oluwatoyin, and Bello Eniola --  remarkably figured out a way to convert one liter of urine to fuel that can produce up to six hours of electricity from their generator.

The urine-powered generator works uncomplicatedly. Initially, urine is put into an electrolytic cell to separate out the hydrogen. It gets purified through a water filter until it gets pushed into the gas cylinder where the filtered hydrogen is pushed through another cylinder that contains liquid borax to remove moisture from the gas. The hydrogen is then pushed into a power generator as the final step.

The hydrogen may pose an explosion risk but the girls used one-way valves all over the device as a safety measure.

Perhaps the idea of using urine as fuel is not new and their invention was still in its early stages, the mere fact that they found out a way that even average households would find it simple to use is already an achievement.

"At first glance, they're not having a net gain in energy," Gerardine Botte, a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Ohio University who also works on practical ways to make urine into electricity source, said. "But I think it's important to say that these little girls, trying to do something like this, deserve a lot of credit."

Watch their story below:

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