What does the future hold?
As we look to the coming decades, it’s clear that our current fuel sources will have to evolve.
These are some of the ideas around potential future sources of fuel and energy…
Jellyfish that glow in the dark contain the raw ingredients for a new kind of fuel cell. Their glow is produced by green fluorescent protein, referred to as GFP. A team at The Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden placed a drop of GFP onto aluminum electrodes and then exposed that to ultraviolet light. The protein released electrons, which travel a circuit to produce electricity.
The same proteins have been used to make a biological fuel cell, which makes electricity without an external light source. Instead of an external light source, a mixture of chemicals such as magnesium and luciferase enzymes, which are found in fireflies, were used to produce electricity from the device.
These fuel cells can be used on small, nano devices such as those that could be implanted in a person to diagnose or treat disease.