Today's Waste, Tomorrow's Energy: Royal Society Exhibition

Posted on Wednesday 4th July 2007

University of Birmingham scientists who are researching tomorrow’s fuels and energy will be exhibiting at the Summer Science exhibition from 2 – 5 July at the Royal Society in London.

The Birmingham exhibit will demonstrate research into different ways of creating greener energy: methods include using precious metals from vehicle exhausts and road dusts; food wastes; and using friendly bacteria to make fuel cells and hydrogen.

‘We are taking several potential sources of energy – from food and urban wastes, and converting them into new energy-making fuel cell materials,’ explains Professor Lynne Macaskie from the University of Birmingham’s School of Biosciences.  ‘Creating hydrogen based fuel cells can create tomorrow’s green electricity and transport fuels, whilst simultaneously reducing waste being dumped in landfill’.

‘Increasing gas and petrol prices and the high price of precious metals add to the need to find reliable alternative resources,’ continues Professor Macaskie.  ‘This coupled with pressure from local councils and the EU to reduce landfill, makes conversion of waste into energy a very attractive solution.’

The team is now moving into the commercialisation phase of this research.  Their goal is to see these techniques being applied to produce clean fuel cells to create reliable, greener energy whilst minimising waste. 

Ends

Notes to Editors

1. Universities of Wales (Cardiff) and C-Tech Innovation Ltd are collaborating with the University of Birmingham on this project.

2. The Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition is held annually at the Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of science.  The event is free and open to the public. This year 23 interactive exhibits will be on show presenting the best of UK science, engineering and technology.  During the four days of the event, more than 4,000 people are expected to take up the opportunity to explore the exhibition.

3. The Exhibition runs from Monday 2 to Thursday 5 July 2007

Press preview:  3.00 – 5.00pm Monday 2 July

Exhibition opening times: 

Monday  2 July  18.00 - 21.00 (late opening)

Tuesday  3 July  10.00 - 21.00 (late opening)

Wednesday 4 July     10.00 - 16.30

Thursday     5 July  10.00 - 16.30

Last entry 30 minutes before closing

Further information can be found at www.summerscience.org.uk

The Royal Society address: 6-9 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5AG. Nearest tubes are Piccadilly Circus or Charing Cross.

For further information

Kate Chapple, Press Officer, University of Birmingham, tel. 0121 414 2772 or 07789 921164 or Clare Kingston, Press Officer, The Royal Society, tel. 020 7451 2508.