Using coffee to create energy isn’t a new idea – we’ve already told you about coffee powered cars and ‘inhalable coffee’. But now one innovative company has even showcased batteries that are powered by used coffee. Known as Nespresso Capsules, and devised by MischerTraxler, the batteries are made from old aluminium capsules, strips of copper, salt water and old coffee grounds.
After the capsules are formed, they are placed between a soil battery and a salt water battery. The aluminium then functions as the anode, while the copper acts as a cathode and the salt water as an electrolyte. In this chemical reaction, a small but still usable amount of energy is created. The batteries were showcased at Venice Design Week, where 700 of them were used to power clocks installed in the window of Nespresso Austria. Each ‘coffee battery’ produces about 1.5 – 1.7 volts of power. Six pots of used coffee mixture linked together could power a clock, while the whole installation at Venice Design Week could potentially run a small radio.
The display at Venice Design Week contained about 680-700 Nespresso Capsules, which is approximately the yearly consumption of coffee for one person. It is hoped that the installation will encourage coffee drinkers to recycle their beans.