Cheap, bacteria-powered battery made from paper could be  a potential game-changing device

Origami is the ancient Japanese art of paper folding, where birds  and other small sculpture are created by using paper. Now, the technique can be applied in building batteries, too, said an engineer from  Binghamton University.

From microbial respiration, the battery generates power to deliver enough energy to run a paper based biosensor, reported the researchers in the Nano Energy journal.

“Paper is cheap and biodegradable and we do not need external pumps or syringes because paper can suck up a solution using capillary force,” said Seokheun “Sean” Choi from the US Binghamton University, who is the  developer of this inexpensive, bacteria-powered battery made from paper.

The process could prove to be useful to someone working in remote areas with limited access of resources.

Experts who work in disease control and prevention seized upon it a key material for creation of diagnostic tools in the developing world.

While paper-based biosensors show promise, the existing technology should be paired with handheld devices for analysis.

Choi’s battery, which fold into a matchbook size, use a cheap air-breathing cathode created by spraying nickel on one side of an ordinary office paper.

The anode is then screened printed with carbon paints, thus creating a hydrophilic zone with wax boundaries. This potential game-changing device cost only five cents, Choi said.




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