Sony Demos Bio Battery Powered by Paper

Posted by at 11:46 am on December 19, 2011

Sony has successfully demonstrated a battery that is powered by paper. The new bio-battery is uses a mixture of water and enzymes to break down the paper into cellulose. After being shaken up, the power produced from glucose was enough to get a small fan to run.

This is the same mechanism with which termites eat wood to get energy,” said Chisato Kitsukawa, a public relations manager at Sony.

“Bio batteries are environmentally friendly and have great potential” as they don’t use metals or harmful chemicals, Kitsukawa added.

Either shredded paper or pieces of corrugated board to create cellulose, which is a long chain of glucose sugar found in the walls of green plants. The enzymes in the solution then break down the cellulose chains and the sugar is then further processed by another batch of enzymes that creates hydrogen ions and electrons. These electrons then travel through an outer circuit to create electricity, while the hydrogen ions mix with oxygen in the air to create water.

However, while useful as proof-of-concept, the concept is still very much experimental as the power output is insufficient to be commercially viable at this time

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