A new hydrogen-fueled vehicle is driven by what we flush away

Remember in Back To The Future when Doc refilled his car with waste found in a garbage can? Well Toyota is hoping to do something similar to power a new fleet of cars it’s producing using a different type of waste. In Fukyoka, Japan, the automaker is converting human waste into hydrogen to fuel their new hydrogen-fueld vehicle, the Mirai.

The process of converting human waste into fuel is remarkably not that complex. Wastewater treatment plants separate sewage into liquid and solid waste. The solid waste, called sewage sludge, is usually thrown into landfills, but in Fukuoka microorganisms are added to the mix. The microorganisms break down the solid waste and create biogas which are about 60 percent methane and 40 percent carbon dioxide. From there CO2 is filtered out and water vapor is added, which creates hydrogen and more CO2. The CO2 is extracted again and voila hydrogen is created.

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