Bath Uni scientists harness soil to generate green energySoil Microbial Fuel Cells.Scientists are harnessing the microorganisms in soil to gener...Bath Uni scientists harness soil to generate green energy
Soil Microbial Fuel Cells.
Scientists are harnessing the microorganisms in soil to generate electricity that could one day help decontaminate polluted landscapes.
A team at the University of Bath has already used the clean technology to help remote communities in Brazil purify their water supply.
They are soon to launch a start-up to bring soil microbial fuel cells (SMFCs) to a commercial market.
The researchers hope SMFCs can help the world end its reliance on fossil fuels.
Mirella Di Lorenzo, a professor of biochemical engineering, explained how microorganisms generate electrons as they break down organic matter in soil.
"All we do is capture those electrons so we can make electricity out of them," she told BBC West.
SMFCs only generate tiny amounts of electricity, but unlike established renewable technologies it does not rely on materials that are difficult or unsustainable to source.