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Consumer Reports

Bacteria that can produce electricity | (UPI) -- University of Massachusetts researchers have developed a way to use bacteria to convert organic matter into electricity in a fuel cell.

Too bad some people kept on talking.

Their work on a microbial-based fuel cell tries to solve earlier problems in the theory -- including that to produce electrical current the bacteria required the addition of toxic chemicals as mediators. The team tested whether Geobacter sulfurreducens could produce an electrical current.

When grown in a microbial fuel cell using graphite rods, the bacteria were able to produce a stable, low-level electrical current without the need for a toxic mediator.

"These studies demonstrate that G. sulfurreducens grows on the surface of energy-harvesting anodes in mediator-free microbial fuel cells, forming a stable, attached population that can continually produce electrical current via the oxidation of organic matter," the researchers wrote.

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