Jun 30, 2011
By Pete Shooner
Gerri Botte, Russ Professor at Ohio University's Fritz J. and Dolores H. Russ College of Engineering and Technology, has been named a fellow of the World Technology Network (WTN).
Comprising 1,000 members in more than 60 countries, WTN is a virtual think tank focused making emerging technologies, from biotech to new energy sources, a reality.
The organization's focus is encouraging serendipity – happy accidents of colliding ideas and new relationships that often are the catalyst for technology breakthroughs.
In December, Botte was honored by the WTN as one of five finalists in the environmental category for individual awards. She was nominated for her research into using ammonia electrolysis for waste remediation, or creating hydrogen for use in fuel cells with clean water as the only by-product – also known as "pee-to-power" technology.
"It's an important step for me, to be named a fellow of this international association. It makes me really proud of the research performed by all the members of the Center for Electrochemical Engineering Research," said Botte, who directs the center.
Botte, who has received international acclaim and media attention for her research, founded E3 Clean Technologies Inc., a company that develops her "Greenbox" technology out of the Ohio University's Innovation Center.
"During the event, Ohio University in collaboration with E3 Clean Technologies Inc. unveiled the first generation of the GreenBox technology prototype, which allows the direct conversion of urea from human waste into hydrogen and clean water," Botte said.
The GreenBox technology uses a low-energy electrolysis process wherein urea is oxidized and turns into carbon dioxide, which is then stored in the electrolyte material in the machine. As a result, the GreenBox not only reduces carbon emissions, but also provides a clean and free source of energy.
"We're commercializing this exciting waste remediation technology for the green energy market so the world can benefit," Botte said.