Best Ideas 2021 features all the nominated entries submitted under ‘Submit your Idea’ category. All the entries consist of innovative solutions or propositions for an enterprise that champions the Sustainable Development Goals. They can be on the conceptual, planning, or start-up stage.
Artificial-leaf-like Electric Generator
Published on September 30, 2021 um 12:43
Explain your idea in details:
There is no doubt that human population growth is the dominant cause of global warming, as humans use fossil fuels to power an increasingly mechanized lifestyle. Increased people imply more demand for oil, gas, coal, and other fuels extracted or drilled from under the Earth's surface, which, when burned, emit enough carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere to trap warm air within, much like a greenhouse. We are witnessing the devastating repercussions of global warming right before our eyes because of our unrelenting population increase and reliance on fossil fuels. According to Princeton University environmental engineer Anu Ramaswami, an expert on sustainable cities and contributor to the Global Resources Outlook reports of the United Nations, overpopulation is not necessarily lead to more CO2 emissions but our nowadays system. Climate change is poised to form extended, more intense, and more frequent heatwaves. Although extreme heat events may not appear to be as spectacular as hurricanes or floods, the National Weather Service of the United States has identified it as the deadliest weather occurrence in the United States over the last 30 years, on average. A study published in the journal Environmental Epidemiology indicates that heat-killed average 5,600 individuals each year between 1997 and 2006 in 297 counties representing three-fifths of the U.S. population. Rising temperatures across the country pose a threat to people, ecosystems, and also the economy. Extreme heatwaves can make people sick and even die. Heatwaves are the number one reason behind weather-related deaths within the United States, killing over 600 people every year. To strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters, we have come out with an idea to solve extreme heat.
Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development
The idea of a Leaf-like electric generator comes out due to extreme heat waves that occur around the globe because of climate change. This product is also one of the solutions for new renewable energy resources. The leaf-like electric generator refers to the mechanism of the leaf to generate energy. The leaf-like electric generator aims to provide a cooling effect to people without releasing carbon dioxide. This product can reduce the number of people getting dehydration and heatstroke. It can also capture carbon from the air to undergo photosynthesis to generate electricity. The leaf-like electric generator worked with three systems that can generate electricity without releasing carbon dioxide. Plant-microbial fuel cells, shadow-effect energy generators, and radiative sky cooling are the system that supports the product. These systems can work in different situations to supply a continuous electric supply. During daylight, the plant-microbial fuel cell will activate and generate electricity. While during rain, the shadow-effect energy generator will operate, and the radiative sky cooling will work mainly at night. Electricity produced by each system will also be distributed to nearby facilities or buildings and provide a cooling effect. It can reduce the temperature on the ground if it is an outdoor floor while it produces a cooling effect to the interior of the building if as a wall. If it is an outdoor shading with an outdoor water-based air conditioner, the water created through oxidation will flow down to the water-based air conditioner through gravity. The plant-microbial fuel cells in the product will generate electricity to operate the outdoor water-based air conditioner. It also can be an outdoor water-based air conditioner during daylight and switch to LED light during the night. This product aims to generate electricity to nearby facilities or electric appliances and give a cooling effect to the surrounding.
Plans for implementation and sustainability
Now, we will do experiment in the lab to get a more accurate data and try to modify it to have better efficiency. We will try to use now available device to be set in the system such as solar panel. We also need to testing how the situation and efficiency of microorganism in the device. Due to the pandemic, we still cannot do the experiment until December. In the next phase, we will promote this idea to companies and try to convince them with our data and presentation.
I am now a junior in Bachelor of Civil Engineering. I have used this idea to participate many competitions to be recognized by many companies and intuitions. Along the competitions, I try to modify this idea due to my experiments and advices from my professors. Since my first time watched Nat Geo Wild, I know I fall interested in the beauty and mysterious of the nature. I try to participated more Sustainable Goal Development Challenges or Competitions to improve my knowledges and experiences. Until now, I just got gold award in SICEX USM 2021 Competition and silver award in I2creaTE 2021 which both are international competition that organized in Malaysia. I still not satisfied with myself thus I try to create more ideas regarding sustainability during this semester break. This idea is be inspired by the extreme heat that kills many people. This creation is created to provide cooling effect to people and generate electricity no matter the day is night or rain. I have refer to many journal to learn about the system that supports this idea. The systems are plant-microbial fuel cells, sky radiative cooling and shadow-effect energy generator. I hope to create an creation that has the concept of biomimicry and can provide a sustainable and renewable energy sources and the idea Artificial-leaf-like Electric Generator has come out.
Artificial-leaf-like electric generator
Stage of Idea
Side View of the idea
Diagram of Artificial-leaf-like Generator