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Scientist Invents Toilet That Converts Human Poo Into Energy And Pays People In Cryptocurrency To Use It

Claire Reid

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Scientist Invents Toilet That Converts Human Poo Into Energy And Pays People In Cryptocurrency To Use It

A university in South Korea is paying students in cryptocurrency for their poop. Not a bad deal, eh?

The specially designed toilet converts the human waste into power, which is then used to help keep the university running.

In return for their poop, the students are given small amounts of cryptocurrency which they then can then use to buy coffee or snacks at the university.

Professor Cho Jae-weon, an urban and environmental engineering professor at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), designed the toilet - called the BeeVi - to help provide eco-friendly energy.

The toilet uses a vacuum pump to send the poo back into an underground tank, where its broken down into methane, which is then used to power the building.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Prof Cho told Reuters: "If we think outside the box and use different scientific technology, faeces can make energy and manure.

"Circulating this precious value back into the ecological system and the economy is the idea of BeeVi toilet."

According to Prof Cho, the average person poops out around 500g a day, which can be converted into 50 litres of methane gas - this can generate 0.5kWh of electricity, or to put it another way, enough to drive a car for about 1.2km (0.75 miles).

Prof Cho added: "Our ultimate goal is not only for the new toilet system to save water and operational costs for wastewater treatment plants, but for us to establish an ecosystem that supports technology innovation and drives economic diversification where human waste literally has a financial value."

As well as being environmentally friendly, the toilet works out pretty well for students who are willing to use it as they are rewarded with a special cryptocurrency called Ggool.

Professor Cho Jae-weon. Credit: unist.ac.kr
Professor Cho Jae-weon. Credit: unist.ac.kr

All students who use the toilet are awarded 10 Ggool a day - they can then spend this on various items at the university from instant cup noodles to books.

Student Heo Hui-jin told Reuters: "I had only ever thought that faeces are dirty, but now it is a treasure of great value to me.

"I even talk about faeces during mealtimes to think about buying any book I want."

Featured Image Credit: unist.ac.kr

Topics: World News, Interesting, Cryptocurrency, Technology

Claire Reid
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