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Japan’s Sony generates power from paper.

As an environmental products fair opened in Tokyo, Sony invited children to put paper into a mixture of water and enzymes, shake it up and wait for a few minutes to see the liquid become a source of electricity, powering a small fan.

“This is the same mechanism with which termites eat wood to get energy,” said Chisato Kitsukawa, a public relations manager at Sony.

While academic research has previously taken place on this kind of power generation, proof-of-concept demonstrations are rare, he said.

The performance was part of Sony’s drive to develop a sugar-based “bio battery” that turns glucose into power.

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