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Superbugs from space to generate electricity

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#1
Bacteria normally found 30km above the earth have been identified as generators of electricity.
Ha!

Bacillus stratosphericus – a microbe commonly found in high concentrations in the stratosphere orbiting the earth with the satellites – is a key component of a new 'super' biofilm that has been engineered by a team of scientists from Newcastle University.
The electrical output of the MFC (Microbial Fuel Cell) from 105W per cubic metre to 200W per cubic metre. Not that much but still not too bad.

MFC which work in a similar way to a battery, use bacteria to convert organic compounds directly into electricity by a process known as bio-catalytic oxidation. A biofilm – or 'slime' – coats the carbon electrodes of the MFC and as the bacteria feed, they produce electrons which pass into the electrodes and generate electricity.
http://www.physorg.com/news/2012-02-superbugs-space-source-power.html
 
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#2
This is very interesting. And 200W per cubic metre is very impressive! Putting these into a modern house in the foundation/cellar while building could lead to easily 5kW output. Enough to power the house, if combined with a storage cell.

This is major if doable.

I wonder what "food" source is required, and also how "waste" is managed. Perhaps it can be combined with a septic tank. Rich source of food for the bacteria, with the benefit of more-degraded waste into the sewers. Benefits and eco all round.

Drone, if you are "subscribed" to this R&D, keep us posted!
 
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#3
and so the zombie apocalypse begins.
 
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#4
zergs? D:
 
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#5
I wonder what "food" source is required, and also how "waste" is managed. Perhaps it can be combined with a septic tank. Rich source of food for the bacteria, with the benefit of more-degraded waste into the sewers. Benefits and eco all round.

Drone, if you are "subscribed" to this R&D, keep us posted!
I wonder that too. They say generated electricity can be used in the waste water treatment. And that'd be awesome if bacteria itself could also degrade some junk. Then this combination could double the benefit. If not then they could just combine different bacteria. There are tons of bacteria, using them is not a bad idea lol.

I read Environmental Science and Technology news time after time that's why microbial fuel cells caught my attention. I'll post if I see anything new.
 
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#6
This time it's "cyborg" snail. LOL

First it was grapes, then cockroaches, and now snails have become the latest organism to generate electricity through an implanted biofuel cell. The process works similarly in all three situations: the electricity comes from a metabolic process involving the transfer of electrons from sugar (such as glucose) to oxygen. In the case of the snail, two electrodes from a biofuel cell are implanted into holes in the snail's shell, with the anode performing glucose oxidation and the cathode performing oxygen reduction. When the electrons flow between the electrodes, they produce an electric current.


The mechanism looks pretty simple

But whereas the grapes and cockroaches could generate electricity for just days or weeks, Evgeny Katz, a professor of chemistry at Clarkson University in Potsdam, New York, and colleagues have shown that the snail can generate electricity for many months at a time. And in spite of the electrodes in their shells, the snails live long, healthy lives.
Lol you can read more here:

http://www.physorg.com/news/2012-03-cyborg-snail-electricity.html

 
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#7
A great business opportunity.

I foresee that the U.S. Government will be willing to dump hundreds of millions, if not billions, of taxpayer dollars into a company that tries to develop this.

Of course, you need to be politically connected to the current administration, i.e. donor.

And, of course, the whole thing will fail, but someone could make a lot of money at the taxpayers expense.
 
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#8
So now we know where lightnings come from for real XD
 
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#9
A great business opportunity.

I foresee that the U.S. Government will be willing to dump hundreds of millions, if not billions, of taxpayer dollars into a company that tries to develop this.

Of course, you need to be politically connected to the current administration, i.e. donor.

And, of course, the whole thing will fail, but someone could make a lot of money at the taxpayers expense.
thank you for that brilliant political observation. both this and your understanding of how research in general works have given a new hope to the human race.
 
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#10
thank you for that brilliant political observation. both this and your understanding of how research in general works have given a new hope to the human race.
Not sure why my comment (not at all in seriousness) appears to have annoyed you...
 
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#11
i remember an old Startrek TV episode, a renegade federation Captain using bacteria/ micro lifeform as power source to their Starship, one of the key question from that episode is it humanly ethical using another life form for self benefit specially when that life form refuse to be use as fuel and fight back with electrical shock.. :D
 
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#12
bump because .... Engineered Bacteria Make Fuel from Sunlight

Chemists at the University of California, Davis, have engineered blue-green algae to grow chemical precursors for fuels and plastics - the first step in replacing fossil fuels as raw materials for the chemical industry.
Gimme fuel gimme fire ... cyanobacteria FTW

Biological reactions are good at forming carbon-carbon bonds, using CO2 as a raw material for reactions powered by sunlight. It's called photosynthesis, and cyanobacteria, also known as "blue-green algae," have been doing it for more than 3 billion years.

Using cyanobacteria to grow chemicals has other advantages: they do not compete with food needs, like corn's role in the creation of ethanol.
That's interesting even if it's not practical

The researchers identified enzymes from online databases that carried out the reactions they were looking for, and then introduced the DNA for these enzymes into the cells. Working a step at a time, they built up a three-step pathway that allows the cyanobacteria to convert CO2 into 2,3 butanediol, a chemical that can be used to make paint, solvents, plastics and fuels.

After three weeks growth, the cyanobacteria yielded 2.4 grams of 2,3 butanediol per liter of growth medium.
ScienceDaily
 
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#13
Power-packed bacterial spores generate electricity


With mighty bursts of rehydration, bacterial spores offer a new source of renewable energy

By smearing spores onto a flat piece of rubber about the length of a human hand, scientists developed a spore-powered generator. In arid conditions, parched spores pull the rubber into a curve, while wafts of wet air plump up spores and spring it flat again.

The team linked the rubber to an electromagnetic generator, so that every flex produced an electric current. Since the spores tote such a high energy potential - more than 1000 times that of mammalian muscle - energy-harvesting devices based on the dormant dynamos could be linked into municipal grids to contribute a power boost to homes and cities.