Using blood as a facilitator of an electrochemical reaction is what Spanish researchers managed to do with the prototype of a battery which worked for almost 30 days, with just 0.165 milligrams of hemoglobin! It is easy to imagine that the first application of this innovation would benefit medical implants using biocompatible batteries.
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Spanish researchers from the Chemical Institute forenergyenergy and environment (Iquema) from the University of Cordoba, in Spain, have succeeded in developing a prototype battery working partly withhemoglobinhemoglobin. This solution has many unsuspected advantages. The work, which is only in its infancy, has already been published in the journal Energy & Fuels.
And why not a battery made from… crab?! This is what researchers have succeeded in producing, by creating a battery that is both safer and more eco-friendly. © Futura
As a reminder, hemoglobin is a proteinprotein present in red blood cells which ensures the transport of oxygen in the body. Researchers have demonstrated here that hemoglobin presents interesting properties in the process ofoxidationoxidation which generates energy in type batteries zinczinc-|92352d6b2e1e7943745e5ae8ae581ead| This is how they developed the very first biocompatible battery which therefore uses hemoglobin in an electrochemical reaction and which transforms chemical energy into electrical energy.
Demonstration of the first battery prototype that uses hemoglobin to function. © Unit of Scientific Culture and Innovation of the University of Cordoba
For biocompatible medical implants
Hemoglobin functions here as a catalystcatalyst in these batteries, by facilitating the electrochemical reaction, also called oxygen reduction reaction. This means that once air enters the battery, the oxygen is reduced and transformed into water in part, releasing electronselectrons which pass into the other part of the battery where the oxidation of the zinc then takes place. And the first results are quite convincing since the team was able to operate its battery prototype for almost 30 days, with just 0.165 milligrams of hemoglobin.
In absolute terms, this type of battery would present numerous advantages, starting with that of being able to be used in extreme atmospheric conditions, where conventional models lithiumlithium-|ed1a120b5986d920cbf41e3672222d56| are affected by humidity or strong heatheat. But ultimately, the most interesting use would concern devices directly integrated into the human body, such as cardiac pacemakers. Finally, note that these biocompatible batteries can only operate in the presence of oxygen and therefore could not be used in space.
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