5 Weird Attempts at Creating Alternative Fuel
The green revolution in automobile fuel has inspired extraordinary creativity in finding renewable sources of energy to power cars, and some of the ideas from scientists strain credibility. Bunnies? Diapers? Scientists have tried to use just about everything in a gas tank. The following are some of the strangest ideas for alternative fuel:
A few years ago a university team in England decided they would try to power a Formula 3 car with chocolate (and other biodegradable materials). The vehicle’s fuel was made of 30 percent chocolate waste biodiesel. The vehicle even sported a steering wheel made from carrots.
2. Human fat
People who visit a plastic surgeon’s office to get rid of some saddlebags with liposuction, probably don’t want to see their fat ever again. But one plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills actually used human fat extracted from patients as diesel for his SUVs. Fat contains triglycerides, which may be extracted and used as fuel.
3. Adult diapers
The only thing less appealing than a car that runs on human fat might be one that employs used adult diapers. Japan has a growing elderly population, and in response to the increase in diaper waste, one firm in that country has created machinery that disassembles used diapers to create fuel pellets.
4. Cow “Emissions”
A disturbing and unintentionally amusing report from the United Nations once suggested that livestock was the cause of an incredible amount of global warming. A few research teams around the world have suggested that harnessing the methane emissions (a euphemistic way to refer to cow flatulence) from the bovine population could be used to fuel engines.
The bunnies in Stockholm, Sweden, weren’t safe when city officials decided to use thousands of rabbits as biofuel to heat homes in the country. Overpopulation of rabbits led to the extermination of the small creatures, which created a surplus of carcasses that required disposal. Animal rights groups were understandably dismayed at the prospect of using bunnies for fuel.
Incredible leaps forward in fuel efficiency have created a new generation of vehicles where 40 MPG isn’t unusual, however, the race to create a readily available alternative fuel continues. Will that ’67 Camaro run on used adult diapers one day? Only time will tell!