A first year PhD student Ramya Veerubhotla from IIT Kharagpur after an extensive research for a year and a half, finally developed batteries which will work on bacteria of sewage water. This battery is bio-degradable and is made of paper and ink ( such low-costs materials) which is used to draw the electric charge from liquids like urine, sewage water ( must be organic). Her research paper on this innovation was presented which won the competition with a cash reward of a prize of 10,00,000 Rupees
“It may be difficult to power household devices with this device, but it can power certain electronic components,” she said in the statement.
The process is: Her innovating battery is constructed by using electrodes which are made by paper which is further coated in carbon-based ink. The ink works to connect the anode and the cathode ( Anode: Electrode where electricity flows into and Cathode: Electrode where the electricity flows out of) and because of the base materials used, the device proves to be biodegradable. The sewage water, which contains bacteria, is then injected into the device, which takes hardly 10 seconds to start up where regular Microbial Fuel Cells take around a couple of days to start.
It was presented at IIT Kharagpur annual competition Sparkle, where students bring up their innovations from across the globe to compete and observe the innovations. Veerubhotla, along with her team Electrodes, got recognised and won the prize for her unique innovation. Her team was the selected winner among more than 1,500 teams that applied and were shortlisted.
“One of the best advantages of the device is that it is 100 percent biodegradable and environment-friendly, which is not the case with chemical batteries,” her mentor Professor Debabrata Das mentioned.
After giving so much in here, her dream stands out and she wants to use this battery, once it is scaled up to give power to microelectronic devices and bio-electric toilets.