Pee-Power Urinal

Bristol Robotics Laboratoy and Oxfam

Pee-Power is a novel electricity-generating sanitation solution for decentralised areas, still only tested under controlled laboratory conditions.



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Product description Brand name and product description

Pee-Power is a prototype that uses urine as a source of power to produce electricity, so-called “Urine-tricity”. The microbial fuel power has been able to generate enough power to charge a Samsung mobile phone, which enables SMS messaging, web browsing and to make a brief phone call. It has also been able to generate sufficient levels of electricity to power a LED-based lighting system for one toilet cubicle.

Plans are to develop microbial fuel cells to power indoor lighting in refugee camps and disaster areas. The abundant, free supply of urine makes the Pee-Power toilet practical for aid agencies to use in the field. In phase two, the purpose is that microbial fuel cells (MFC) can provide enough power to light a 10m radius around a block of four toilets.

The prototype has been tested on the University campus. The urinal on the campus resembles a toilet used in refugee camps by Oxfam to make the trial as realistic as possible. Video of the how Pee-Power works and video of mobile phone runs on urine power.

Target region(s) Target region for distribution/implementation (listed by country if specified)

Prototypes installed in the UK’s largest music festival for field-trial purposes. The prototype needs improvement before any commercial deployment, and plans are to install the technology in refugee camps and deprived countries all over the world.

Advertisement about Pee-Power Toilet

Distributors/implementing organizations Organization(s) distributing/deploying this product directly to communities/individuals?"

The Pee-Power technology is the result of a partnership between researchers at the Bristol Robotics Laboratory, a collaborative partnership between the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) and the University of Bristol, and Oxfam.

Market suggested retail price Price per unit or service price per usage/terms (USD). Subsidies noted.

For June 2016, one microbial fuel cell costs about 1.30 USD to make and the complete unit that has been mocked up in the university would cost a total of 800-850 USD to set up in a refugee camp.

Competitive landscape Similar products available on the market. May not be a comprehensive listing.
SDG targeted United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targeted with this product/application/service

Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.

Target user(s) Target user/consumer base (country, income segment)

Communities in refugee camps and disaster areas, which are often dark and dangerous places particularly for women. By lighting bits of the camp, the Pee-Power toilet can create a safe environment so that women can go out, use the toilets at night, do things at night in a safer environment.

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