Feeds

Scientists build caramel-powered margarine-making fuel cell

Cadbury's E. coli hydrogen fermenter

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Scientists from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) have found that waste from confectionery production could be used to produce useful amounts of hydrogen for electricity generation. The feasibility study used sugar-rich waste from a Cadbury's factory to power a fuel cell.

E. coli bacteria in a five litre vessel fermented run-off from nougat and caramel production lines to produce hydrogen. A second culture of Rhodobacter sphaeroides was added to increase the yield of the reaction.

Adding palladium turns what little waste does remain into a useful catalyst that can be used in removing PCB pollutants from the environment, making fuel-cell electrodes, or for hydrogenation for products like margarine.

An assessment by a bioprocesses consultancy said the set-up could be scaled up to produce industrial quantities of carbon-free fuel.

Project leader Lynne Macaskie of Birmingham University said: "Although only at its initial stages, we've demonstrated a hydrogen-producing, waste-reducing technology that, for example, might be scaled up in five to 10 years time for industrial electricity generation and waste treatment."

Work is ongoing by the EPSRC to turn the principles proven in this work into practical generation projects. There's a video of the technology in action here. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Brit amateur payload set to complete full circle around PLANET EARTH
Ultralight solar radio tracker in glorious 25,000km almost-space odyssey
Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low
Cheshire cat effect see neutrons and their properties walk different paths
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.