Fly power that keeps us to time

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To pest controllers flies are a pest. To the team at the Bristol Robotics Lab they are fuel to power a clock. Maybe this is the start of something new?

Using two motors, fly paper, a scraper and microbial fuel cell, this clock gets it’s energy from flies.

This prototype time-piece from UK-based designers James Auger and Jimmy Loizeau from the Bristol Robotics Labs traps insects on flypaper stretched across its roller system before depositing them into a vat of bacteria. The ensuing chemical reaction, or “digestion,” is transformed into power that keeps the rollers rollin” and the LCD clock ablaze.

Only eight flies are required to power the clock for 12 days.

Click here to watch the fascinating video explaining how all this works.

Coming-up in the next issue of Pestmagazine – issue 21 – look out for a full feature on more traditional ways of catching flies – how the UV lamps we are all so familiar with in EFKs are made.


  Robotic fly powered clockFly-powered. 
Only eight flies required! 

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