When you run a zoo, we imagine there's a large quantity of animal excrement to dispose of. Fertilizer is the first thing that comes to mind. But there are only so many zoo gardens in need of nutrients. Sooner or later, you're faced with surplus of tiger turds, camel crap and snake, um, shizzle.

The Denver Zoo has decided the best use of its panda poop is to power a 20-year-old tuk tuk, or motorized rickshaw. Actually, the zoo takes all its animal waste and most human-produced trash and makes "gasified pellets" that are then subjected to very high heat in a no-oxygen environment. The pellets then give off syngas, which is burned in a generator to produce electricity used to charge the batteries for the tuk tuk's electric motor. Got all that?

The zoo says the tuk tuk is its second prototype to test the technology. The first was a syngas-powered blender used to make margaritas for zoo events. Mmmm. Tasty.

When its new elephant exhibit opens June 1, the zoo hopes to have it powered by syngas. Eventually they hope to take 100 of their power needs. Check out the video after the jump.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 36 Comments
      sfblog
      • 2 Years Ago
      Probably sounds like sh*t
      nearprairie
      • 2 Years Ago
      Power to the poople! And +1 to the article writer for a cogent use of alliteration.
      Spartan
      • 2 Years Ago
      So it's safe to say that the Tuk Tuk is full of sh*t? :-)
      malgu
      • 2 Years Ago
      What a waste! :P
      Jeremy Mock
      • 2 Years Ago
      Can you imagine the smell of the exhaust fumes?!?!? YUCK.
      emomplace
      • 2 Years Ago
      Careful, don't drive to close; it may fart
      lnnbauer91043
      • 2 Years Ago
      yes but do you have to go to D.C. to refil?
      • 2 Years Ago
      if we could only get it to run on goverment waste we would never have to worry about fuel
      Paul C. Duncan
      • 2 Years Ago
      tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, FART!!! tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, FART!!! tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, tuk, FART!!!...........STINKY,... but it is a step in the right direction... as long as you don't "step" in it
      Bryce Meyer
      • 2 Years Ago
      thats nice now where's my flux capacitor!
      larry
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wow ! ! ! Too bad they can't invent a car that runs on "hot" air. Washington D.C. would really get their money's worth.
      swtdreamluvr
      • 2 Years Ago
      washington dc needs one or 2 of those,with all the **** they try to peedle us.
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