Sony introduced paper-powered battery

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Sony has developed a new type of battery that operates using waste paper. The bio-battery can produce electricity turning shredded paper into sugar, which in turn is used as fuel. If commercialized, innovation can allow users to upload their mobile devices using the waste bin.

The process works by using the enzyme to break down the cellulose materials into sugar glucose. These are then combined with oxygen and enzymes that transform the material into electrons and hydrogen ions, giving the cell the necessary resources to make a battery work. This process is very similar to the digestive system of termites that eat wood.

The technology was presented in early December in the Eco-Products 2011 exhibition in Tokyo. In the demo, the company's engineers used a paper folder and put it in a mixture of water. The research team said that the cellulose will only serve as a catalyst so that it can be used multiple times making the battery recyclable and sustainable.

Currently, this bio-battery is just strong enough to run a small fan. Company researchers claim that the waste of paper battery can provide up to 18 Wh of electricity, which would be enough for most digital music devices on the market.

Unlike traditional batteries, it uses no metal or other chemicals.

"Of course the research is still in very early stages of its development, but when you imagine the possibilities that this technology could offer, it is very exciting indeed," said Yuichi Tokita, a senior fellow of the Research Laboratory for Advanced Materials Sony's.

The environmental organization Greenpeace welcomed the development: "Any way to provide a greener technology can be a magical potential. I think it's amazing that companies like Sony are trying to make power generation more environmentally friendly," says John Sauven said, executive director of Greenpeace UK, told BBC News.

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