In Back To The Future 2 Dr Emmet Brown had his DeLorean’s mythical Mr. Fusion reactor powered by some garbage. So now’s the time to add this invention to the list of BTTF futuristic gadgets that came to reality!
Two Barcelona-based researchers Aleix Llovet and Xavier Salueña (one is a student, the other one a professor) created a really unique RC toy. What’s really awesome about it is that it uses aluminium waste, specifically can tabs, as its main fuel. Actually the car needs also sodium hydroxide dissolved in water, because it reacts with aluminium generating hydrogen which is the power source. It has totally clean propulsion system emitting no CO2 at all. On a single tank it runs up to 40 min, developing the maximum speed of around 30 km/h.
To power the car you need to put some aluminium can tabs along with domestical sodium hydroxide to the tank. The generated hydrogen is filtered by a vinegar filter, to remove traces of hydroxides. Then it’s filtered again and finally reaches the stack generating electricity. Sadly, you shouldn’t expect to see this invention on the streets in the nearest future but it clearly presents there are many power sources other than gas. Inventors predict their idea might be used commercially in manufacturing much cheaper RC cars. It is also a perfect educational tool to demonstrate how the fuel cell works.
Llovet and Salueña both come from School of Industrial and Aeronautical Engineering of Terrassa, which is a part of Polytechnic University of Catalonia and located in Barcelona, Spain. The RC car is first of its type and the technology was patented by their University.
See the cool video below presenting the car: