Urine for a wee surprise, say UWE researchers

Researchers from the University of Western England (UWE) and Bristol Robotics Lab (BRL) are developing what they claim are the ultimately environmentally friendly robots or EcoBots. 
The reason they are environmentally friendly, say they scientist, who insist they are not taking the p***, is that the robots will be powered using urine.
‘In cities, the robots could re-charge using urine from urinals in public lavatories, while in rural environments, liquid waste could be collected from farms,” said project lead Peter Walters.
At the heart of the project are microbial fuel cells (MFCs) that contain micro-organisms that produce electrons by breaking down the liquid waste. 
The first success of the project was when the research team was able to generate enough electricity in this way to power a mobile phone.
In the future, it is believed that EcoBots could be deployed as monitors in areas where there may be dangerous levels of pollution or dangerous predators. 
The group’s future research will focus on improving the efficiency of the device, and investigating how it might be incorporated into the next generation of MFC-powered robots.