Dr. Botte has received national and international attention for her waste water-to-hydrogen fuel research. Coined "pee to power," Botte's work takes waste water — such as found on animal farms — and converts the substance into a hydrogen fuel by adding electrical current. The process converts ammonia, nitrates and urea in waste water to hydrogen.
Using this technique, Botte has developed fuel cells with the ability to operate small electrical functions in vehicles, such as powering an iPod or other electrical device.
In addition to being a professor and a scientist, Botte is a prolific inventor, entrepreneur and visionary. Botte and members of her research group are focusing on developing solutions for some of the world’s greatest challenges related to food, water and energy. Example projects include: hydrogen production from ammonia, urea, biomass and coal, synthesis of carbon nanotubes and graphene, water remediation and disinfection, selective catalytic reduction, ammonia synthesis, electrochemical conversion of CO2 to high value products, novel electrolytes for thermal batteries and advanced electrowinning.
Dr. Botte has been involved in the commercialization of technologies and has founded and co-founded companies. Ambreon, LLC (established in 2018) is a company that has been founded to commercialize the Ammonia GreenBox. The Ammonia GreenBox provides the latest in cost-effective solutions for wastewater treatment for the removal of ammonia and nitrates. Ammonia is a large scale threat to environmental quality causing impaired air quality, surface water eutrophication and nitrate contamination of ground water. The device cleans commercial, municipal and agricultural waste water that contains ammonia and/or nitrates into hydrogen energy.Designed to target the wastewater market with the implementation of green energy, the company is providing a skid mounted solution for the efficient removal of ammonia and nitrates.
In December 2010, Botte was named an individual finalist in the Environment category of the World Technology Awards in New York City and was named a Fellow of the World Technology Network in the Environment category. In 2012, she became a Chapter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. In 2014, she was named a Fellow of the Electrochemical Society for her contributions and innovation in electrochemical processes and engineering.
Demonstration of the Hydrogen Car