Archive for the ‘Recycling’ Category

The plant, called the Omniprocessor, was designed and built by Janicki Bioenergy and backed by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The facility would try to prevent diseases caused by contaminated water supplies.

A test plant is up and working at Janicki’s headquarters north of Seattle, according to a blog post by Gates. The first operational plant is planned for Senegal.

“The next-generation processor, more advanced than the one I saw, will handle waste from 100,000 people, producing up to 86,000 liters of potable water a day and a net 250 kw of electricity,” he wrote. “If we get it right, it will be a good example of how philanthropy can provide seed money that draws bright people to work on big problems, eventually creating a self-supporting industry.”

Included is a video of him drinking a glass of the water produced by the plant, which he describes as “delicious” and “as good as any I’ve had out of the bottle.”

“Having studied the engineering behind it, I would happily drink it every day. It’s that safe,” he writes on the post.

The feces is heated to 1000 degrees Celsius, or 1,832 degrees Fahrenheit to draw off the water, which is then further treated to make sure it is safe. But the dried out feces can then be burned, producing enough heat to generate electricity needed to extract the water. Excess electricity can be sold to outside users, as can the water.

Gates says diseases caused by poor sanitation kill some 700,000 children every year. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is making an effort to improve sanitation in the developing world.

“Today, in many places without modern sewage systems, truckers take the waste from latrines and dump it into the nearest river or the ocean—or at a treatment facility that doesn’t actually treat the sewage,” he wrote. “Either way, it often ends up in the water supply.”

http://money.cnn.com/2015/01/07/technology/innovationnation/gates-poop-water/index.html

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As the world tries to come up with interesting ways to spread the word about saving our environment, a man in Paraguay has found an innovative way to promote “green” ideas and social awareness – while also encouraging music.

Favio Chávez was working at a huge landfill south of the capital, Asunción, several years ago when he made friends with the families who worked as recyclers and lived among the trash. He eventually figured out how to use the scraps of dirty oil cans, jars, wood, forks and other junk in the Cateura Landfill to make instruments for his very own orchestra, with the local kids as its members.

“One day it occurred to me to teach music to the children of the recyclers and use my personal instruments,” explains 36 year-old Chávez, who worked as an ecological technician at the landfill. “But it got to the point that there were too many students and not enough supply. So that’s when I decided to experiment and try to actually create a few.”

A musician himself, Chávez had experience forming classical ensembles. But constructing a brass and string section from scratch wasn’t part of the plan.

At first, he just threw together a few for the children who didn’t have something to play with. But after hearing the good sound the objects produced, he consulted the help of a resident garbage picker nicknamed “Cola” to gradually perfect them over time. 

What astonished everyone was how the recycler used his basic carpentry skill to engineer such smooth sounding, built-to-scale cellos and violins in his workshop just from scraps.

“It was very difficult at first and it has been a learning process,” says Favio. “But after four years of testing them out, we discovered which materials were better for resonance effects and built the instruments that we use now.”   

His love of music is what made Chávez form the orchestra, now 30 member-strong. 

While it has been a big commitment for the children and families, it has paid off – they’ve received worldwide recognition and have performed throughout the world, from Argentina to Brazil to Germany.

Their unique story is so special that a U.S.-based filmmaker is currently making a documentary about them. “Landfill Harmonic” follows Favio’s ensemble as it takes what the world throws away and turns it into a piece of beauty.

The children orchestra has donated some instruments to the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona and plans to play a show there soon.

“It’s awe inspiring that people could live in that degree of squalor and still have the spirit to make this orchestra,” said documentary director Graham Townsley. “It’s breathtaking.“ 

The ultimate goal of the music project is to educate the public about a world problem, they say, that shouldn’t be ignored. Plus, it’s giving the children an opportunity they otherwise would never have had.

“I made this orchestra to educate the world and raise awareness,“ says Chávez. “But it’s also a social message to let people know that even though these students are in extreme poverty, they can also contribute to society.  They deserve an opportunity.”
Read more: http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/lifestyle/2012/11/21/landfill-worker-in-paraguay-turns-trash-into-orchestra/#ixzz2E7NjZBTB

Mitsuyuki Ikeda, a researcher from the Environmental Assessment Center in Okayama has developed a new artificial meat burger made of human feces.

Ikeda has gathered sewage mud (which contains human feces) and has developed the artificial meat by adding fecal extracts, soy protein and steak sauce essence. Artificial food coloring to added to it to give it the same look as red meat. It is composed of 63 percent protein, 25 percent carbohydrates, 3 percent lipids and 9 percent minerals.

Protein is extracted from the sewage mud first. After the protein is extracted, “reaction enhancer” is added to it and it is then put in a machine called the “exploder” which produces the artificial meat. During the entire process, the bacteria in the sewage mud is rendered harmless as it is killed by heating.

The scientist is hoping that the new type of meat will one day replace real meat, which is more expensive to produce. He claims that the new feces burger is actually healthier than real meat (fecal meat has less fat and hence less calories) and is more environment-friendly (cows supposedly contribute around 18 percent of our greenhouse gas emissions).

Currently, fecal meat costs 10-20 times more than normal meat because of the cost of research, but ultimately Ikeda plans to bring the price down so that people can switch to feacl meat one day.

Ikeda did not say whether his “poop meat” is as tasty as real meat and he has acknowledged that few people would be keen to eat it.

http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/164958/20110617/japanese-scientist-makes-poop-burger-mitsuyuki-ikeda.htm

 

Scientists claim there is a fine margin between genius and madness and this is one invention which surely proves that theory.

Loo manufacturer Gao Jianguo discovered a way to transform these bog standard unused toilets into fully functional desks by turning one lavatory’s cistern lid into portable lap desks.

Alternatively students can sit on top of the toilet seat backwards and work from a fixed position.

Gao, from Shijiazhuang, northern China, has now donated hundreds of the wacky toilet desks to local schools in the area.

While most critics believe his invention stinks, the inventor says his unique idea will stop hundreds of loos being thrown away every year.

‘We have lots of toilets that we would otherwise throw away,’ said Gau, responding to critics who have poo-poohed the idea.

‘It is wasteful and if we can find a use for them we should.

‘They are brand new and have never been used so there is no hygiene issue.’

Read more: http://www.metro.co.uk/weird/891058-recycled-toilets-made-into-school-desks-by-potty-chinese-inventor#ixzz1nttwW4MM