From the sewer to the brewer: urine beer

Scientists have created a solar powered machine that could be used to convert urine into beer. Researchers at the University of Ghent in Belgium invented the green device that boils […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Scientists have created a solar powered machine that could be used to convert urine into beer.

Researchers at the University of Ghent in Belgium invented the green device that boils and separates pee into two parts: drinkable water and fertiliser.

After it’s collected, a solar-powered boiler evaporates the water part through a membrane, separating it from useful nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous.

Having successfully tested it at a music festival, the team is now considering using the water to make beer.

The ultimate aim is to bring clean water to rural areas and developing countries where it is not always readily available.

Researchers at the University of the West of England (UWE) are also investigating other innovative uses for urine.

The department in Bristol is developing a “pee power” device that uses urine to feed microbial fuel cells and generate electricity, leaving a fertiliser by-product.

The researchers plan to use the clean energy to power areas with little infrastructure, such as toilets and charging stations at refugee camps or sanitation plants in developing areas.