MIT Students' Device Creates Electricity from Grass Clippings

Ethan Crumlin, Andrew Hoy, Joseph Walish, Peter Weigele, John Craven, Gerardo Jose, and Jungik Kim of Team BioVolt

Team BioVolt from MIT has created a prototype device that generates cheap electricity from grass clippings. They won first place in the MIT and Dow Materials Engineering Contest (MADMEC) 2007:

The device the team invented for the competition generates electricity from cellulosic biomass. The device is intended to generate enough electricity to charge a cell phone in developing countries. Team members say that the current power output of the device would take about six months to recharge your cell phone.

However, BioVolt is quick to point out that the materials in the device only cost about $2 to obtain and the biomass "fuel" can be found everywhere in nature as leaves and grass clippings. The team members say that multiple units could be connected together to increase power output and that refinements in the design of the device could yield a 100 times increase in efficiency.

Link | More about MIT and Dow Materials Engineering Contest

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I don't see it needing platinum, or any other materials that are hard to acquire in a 3rd world nation.

and this was 2005
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I guess it wasn't a high school student- but all the same, it sounds a little too similar to be unique.
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wasn't there a highschool student who created a product, just like this one, using water rich in bacteria? I bet they are using the natural bacteria that begins to form with decaying biological waste.

If it's just an alteration of a previous design, they don't deserve recognition.
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