Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Now, onions to power your iPods!

A man found a unique way of saving electricity when charging his iPod - by using an onion soaked in energy drink.

Owen Louis, 21, who happens to be a music fan, was worried about the amount of electricity his MP3 player was using, and decided to use the vegetables to power up his device.

Louis’ technique involved boring two holes in an onion, soaking it in an energy drink then sticking a USB cable into it, and device enables him to charge his iPod for an hour.

“I was watching TV with my laptop on and my iPod playing and thought, ‘How much electricity must I be using?’” Metro.co.uk quoted him as saying.

“A friend showed me the experiment as a laugh but I thought it was the greatest thing I have ever seen, and do it religiously every day,” he said.

Louis, from Portsmouth, said that the idea was a foolproof way of staying green as the onion decomposes and the drink bottle can be recycled once finished with.

Phil Stubbles, a physics lecturer from St Vincent College in Gosport, Hampshire, said that almost all vegetables could power iPods because they contain ions, which react with energy drinks to create a charge.

“The only problem is you have no control over how long it may work for ... and it can be smelly,” he added.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Now, a gadget that makes water 'out of thin air'

London (PTI): It's a gadget straight out of a science fiction movie -- a machine that scientists claim can make water out of thin air. An international team at Canadian firm Element Four has developed the gadget, called Water Mill, which its hopes could actually become the greatest household invention since the microwave.

According to the scientists, using the same technology as a de-humidifier, the gadget could create a ready supply of drinking water by capturing it from an unlimited source -- the air, the 'Daily Mail' reported. The Water Mill works by drawing in moist air through a filter and over a cooling element that condenses it in water droplets -- it can produce up to 12 litres a day and generate more water when storms pass over, as the humidity in the air increases.

According to the scientists, the machine not only offers an alternative to bottled water in developed countries, but it is a solution for the millions who face a daily water shortage. And, in keeping with its eco-development, the machine uses the same amount of electricity as three light bulbs. "The demand for water is off the chart. People are looking for freedom from water distribution systems that are shaky and unreliable," Jonathan Ritchey, who led the team, was quoted by the British newspaper as saying.

The Water Mill, which is about 3ft wide, is likely to cost 800 pounds and a litre of water will cost around 20 pence to produce.

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