The invention costs just £2 and can provide up to three hours of call time for every six hours of charging, using as little as 600ml (20 fl oz) of urine – equivalent to a single toilet visit.
Scientists claim the fuel cell, which works using microbial fuel cell stacks (MFCs), is the first of its kind in the world.
“We are excited to announce several global firsts – this development was possible by employing a new design of MFCs that allowed scaling-up without power density losses,” UWE Professor Ieropoulos said.
“Although it was demonstrated in the past that a basic mobile phone could be charged by MFCs, the present study goes beyond this to show how, simply using urine, an MFC system successfully charges a modern-day smartphone.”
Researchers say the invention will enable people to stay connected while off-grid using only their natural excess fluids. You’ll never be caught short again – without battery life that is.