One of the most exiting new green technologies that has the potential to make a huge contribution to our future energy needs comes from a picturesque farm right out of Middle Earth, otherwise known as New Zealand.
Meet Brian Ullsheet, a farmer from New Zealands King Country. He has been farming livestock all his live and knows a thing or two about cattle. One day in 2012 he had an idea that just would not get out of his mind. You see, dear reader, cows have their daily routine which consists of basically three phases: Grazing, Regurgitating and Playing.
It was the “Playing” that was, from a farmer’s point of view, very unproductive. The animals would trample a lot of grass, therefore spoil a part of their foodstock, for nothing. So Brian came up with the idea to put this urge of his cows to better use. Getting busy in his workshop he came up with this treadmill, cow size of course, to see if he could get the animals to acually walk on it. He used a mixture of corn and salt, to entice the cows to try to get to this tasty treat. It worked so well, that Brian soon built a big treadmill to allow a dozen cows to walk simultaniously trying to get to the corn/salt mixture.
The next step was to hook a generator up to the treadmill. Amazingly, the electricity produced amounted to 3 kW/H per cow during each “playing phase”! Mr. Ullsheet contacted Lincoln University to help him further develop this technology and only one year later, the first purpose built cattle power station became reality. The possibilities are nothing short of amazing! Not only does the extra grass, saved from being trampeled, more than cover the cost of the corn/salt consumed, but also, the methan gas collected from the animals is an additional energy gained.
Brian and his team are now in negotiations with Chinese investors to power a small town entierly with the electric energy harvested in this very sustainable way! Even the cows excrements are being processed as fertiliizer. The methane gas harvested powers a gas turbine, producing even more electricity. All in all, this has the potential to be a game changer in the field of green energy!
What’s not to like about it? The only waste product is……steaks! The name B. Ullsheet might well become known worldwide once this exiting new technology becomes available globally.