Human Poo, Rotting Food to Power New Trains
LONDON ??The Times newspaper reports that trains powered by human sewage and discarded food will be introduced to Britain's railway for the first time under plans to phase out dirty diesel engines.
A full-size "BioUltra" train capable of carrying 120 passengers is being developed with government funding.
The lightweight, low-cost train will be fuelled by biomethane. Biomethane is a renewable gas made from organic waste.
Britain currently has a number of sewage plants fitted with fermentation tanks. These fermentation tanks are filled with a combination of human sewage sludge, rotting food waste and other organic waste to create a potent mixture that is digested by bacteria in a process that creates methane gas.
The gas then rises to the top of the pungent mixture, where it is siphoned off to mechanisms that separates the methane from other gases.
The new, lightweight trains will burn the gas in special engines that will convert it into electrical power, which will charge the train's batteries and drive its motors.
The rail cars are expected to reach speeds of up to 80 kilometers per hour.
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