Soil Microbes Could Charge Mobile Phones

May 13, 2011 / No Comments

You all might have faced difficulty charging your mobile phones while you travel or when the power is cut off for a long time. However, none of you might have ever thought of a cell phone that could be charged by the soil microbes. But here it is.

phone Soil Microbes Could Charge Mobile Phones

A team of green enthusiasts from the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are working on mobile phones that could be charged by simply putting them in contact with microbes living in the soil. Though it is a bit exaggerated, the designers claim that the green endeavor is aimed at transforming the conditions of poorer communities around the world.

Dubbed as microbial fuel cell-based charger, the prototype will be first tested in Sub-Saharan Africa in view to benefit around 22% of homes there.  The project has been receiving immense support from various parts of the world. For instance, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have come forward with a $100,000 grant.

Now, let’s check how the ‘green charger’ works and its viability. The charger will be able to capture the free electrons released by the soil microbes during their metabolic processes sing a conductive surface. The device is expected be capable of charging a phone within 24 hours. Dr. Aviva Presser Aiden, who leads the team of scientists is highly optimistic about her new mission and opines that even soda cans could be recreated to simplistic devices.

(Via Inhabitat)