This South Korean Toilet Turns Excreta Into Power and Digital Currency
We all never give it a second thought before flushing the poop in the toilet. Imagine using a toilet to get your coffee or buying you a snack at a university in South Korea. Yes, this special South Korean toilet will use human waste to turn into power for a building and digital currency to be used on campus.
At the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), an urban and environmental engineering professor Cho Jae Weon designed a toilet that utilizes human excrement to produce biogas and manure!
The toilet – called BeeVi toilet – uses a vacuum pump to discard the feces into a tank where microbes decompose the waste into methane, which thereby becomes a source of energy to power the infrastructure.
This idea helped Professor Weon to think out of the box and look at human waste as a valuable source of energy and a way to make the best use of waste by creating a circular ecological system.
It is recorded that on average, a human discards 500 grams of feces every day, which can generate up to 50 liters of methane gas – good enough to drive a car for about 1.2 kilometers.
Besides producing biogas, the poop can also be dehydrated to make a powdery fuel or bricks, which have a similar energy production to that of coal. There is even a UK-based treatment plant that is powered 50% using poop!
The BeeVi toilet is a similar venture offering to deal not just with producing renewable energy but also deal with sanitation issues. Overflowing and mismanaged sewage can lead to contamination of water supplies that can impact the ecosystem and health of people.
Professor Weon has also coined a virtual currency Ggool, which can be earned for using the BeeVi toilet. A person can earn at most 10 Ggools a day, which can get them a cup of coffee, instant ramen, fruits, and even books on the UNIST campus. Who knew that our poop would be worth something after all?
Via: Power Technology