There are many options to recycle and reuse water from our taps and baths, without it even leaving the household, but a team of South Korean scientists just came up with an idea, which takes the concept to a whole new level. They developed a gadget that uses water from flushing toilets and turns it into the most perfect source of electricity.
The inventors from Seoul National University and Korea Electronics Technology Institute created special active capacitive-transducers, which use the force from any simple action, i.e. running tap water or flushing toilet, and convert it into an incredible amount of electricity. The secret technology is based on the principle of using mechanical motion and has a relatively simple structure. It comprises of patterned transparent electrodes, spin-coated dielectric layers, and hydrophobic layers. The researchers estimated that with their little gadget, a green LED could be lit only with the charge created by the movement of a single water droplet.
What makes the technology truly unique is the fact that it could be implemented pretty much everywhere. The bathroom was already mentioned, but of course the gadget would work just as well in nature, converting rain water, ocean waves and river flows into hydropower, in a way that was never thought of before.
The study was published in the journal of Energy and Environmental Science. As it is with most of these type of experimental technologies, the findings of the researchers have a long way to go before they get materialized and hit the market shelves. But who knows, maybe there would be a generous sponsor, who will express interest in the invention and help us use up that wasted water in a clean and very sustainable way.
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