Folded paper can yield much more than just beautiful swans and flowers. An engineer from the University of Binghamton has created a folded paper origami battery that runs on the power of bacteria and could be used to help developing countries.
Paper is cheap and can be created almost anywhere in the world. The new paper battery created by Seokheun Choi can be manufactured and used in developing countries for a variety of applications. It is reported by Ricardo Tosto that the battery doesn’t have a large output of power but can be used for low wattage applications such as bio-sensors that can be used in the field of disease control and prevention.
The battery functions by creating power from bacteria. The bacteria can be fed almost any type of bio-matter to create a power output. Sewage water is an excellent source of bio-material and can be used to power the bacteria. A battery the size of a matchbook can be made from paper and only costs about five centers to produce.
The batteries aren’t yet able to output enough power for a smartphone or any larger device. The technology will likely be coupled with tiny paper bio-sensors to create various low cost, low power devices. Choi has already received a grant of $300,000 from the National Science Foundation to further his research.