Toilet Turns Human Waste Into Power & Digital Money!
A South Korean Professor has developed a toilet which can turn human excrement into power and ultimately make a way to earn digital currency! Interestingly, the currency called ‘Ggool’ can be used by concerned students to buy products on campus, reports Reuters.
According to the report, Cho Jae-Weon, an urban and environmental engineering professor at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), has designed an eco-friendly toilet connected to a laboratory that uses excrement to produce biogas and manure (animal dung used for fertilizing land) to help provide power to a building at the university.
The toilet called ‘BeeVi’ uses a vacuum pump to send faeces (excrement) into an underground tank, reducing water use. There, microorganisms break down the waste to methane, which becomes a source of energy for the building, powering a gas stove, hot-water boiler and solid oxide fuel cell.
The report quoted Professor Cho as saying, ‘if we think out of the box, faeces have precious value to make energy and manure. I have put this value into ecological circulation.’
According to the the professor, human beings, on an average, defecate about 500 grams of excrement a day, which can be converted to 50 liters of methane gas. This gas can generate 0.5 kWh (kilo-watt hour) of electricity or be used to drive a car for about 1.2km.
On the other hand, Professor Cho has devised a virtual currency to encourage students and others at the campus to use the toilet. Everyone who uses the eco-friendly toilet can earn up to 10 Ggool—-meaning Honey in Korean—-a day.
With the currency Ggool, students at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology can buy goods such as freshly brewed coffee to instant cup noodles, fruits and books etc. The students can pick up the products they want at a shop set up on the campus and scan a QR code to pay with the currency.
Of the toilet and the provisions comes with it, a post-graduate student opines this way, ‘I have only ever thought that faeces are dirty, but now it is a treasure of great value to me’, adding ‘I even talk about excrement during mealtimes to think about buying any book I want.’