DS0201 - Exploration de concepts en rupture

biomimetic membranes that produce biologically-inspired energy – bioWATTS

Submission summary

This project investigates the production of “green” energy by taking a biological approach inspired by cell membranes. We have recently demonstrated that those biomimetic principles of membrane ion transport generated an electrical potential in an artificial cell. We used that know-how and biomimetic technology to generate electrical power in a conventional 2-chamber diffusion device (BBFC). We now aim to: (1) to develop and test new stable and cost-effective porous functional materials with specialised surface chemistries capable of interacting with specialised biomimetic membranes for the BBFC (WP01), (2) to develop and demonstrate scalable cost-effective production and purification methods for membrane transport proteins that provide the ion- and water-transport capability for biomimetic membranes (WP01), (3) to identify and demonstrate an efficient scalable incorporation route for reconstituting the transport proteins into a stable biomimetic membrane (WP01), (4) to design and construct a prototype “bio-W-cube” device that combines multiple BBFC units (in-series and in-parallel) to produce large amounts of power. This prototype will provide the basis for both implantable biofuel cells and external biofuel cells for nomadic electronics or home/office applications (WP02), (5) to develop robust functional materials for enclosures for BBFCs, and demonstrate sufficient biocompatibility so that they eventually can be implanted/ into human or animal hosts (WP03). By exploiting salt as the fuel, this project is positioned to address the medical device market with a paradigm-shifting power supply. On a broader scale for the production of “green” energy, the societal impact would also include offering increased local control of energy production, because the bioWATTS production processes are biologically-inspired self-assembly and hence do not require large-scale and centralised factory-type facilities. The project will develop a prototype device ‘”bio-W-cube”) to assess the feasibility of such a local production of energy

Project coordinator

Monsieur Donald MARTIN (Laboratoire Techniques de l’Ingénierie Médicale et de la Complexité - Informatique, Mathématiques et Applications, Grenoble)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


ISCR - université Rennes 1 Institut des Sciences Chimiques de Rennes
TIMC IMAG - UJF Laboratoire Techniques de l’Ingénierie Médicale et de la Complexité - Informatique, Mathématiques et Applications, Grenoble

Help of the ANR 508,323 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: December 2015 - 36 Months

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