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Inventor wins patent on production of urine-based fertiliser

By Chukwuma Muanya
08 December 2022   |   4:05 am
A Nigerian scientist and President/Director of Research at Lumos Laboratories Nigeria Limited, Ejikeme Patrick Nwosu, has received another patent on production of urine-based fertiliser. This has brought the number of patents on his name to five.

Converting urine and other wastes into clean renewable energy and organic fertiliser. CREDIT: LUMOS LABORATORIES

•Says ‘soon, people will be able to use public conveniences for free, paid a token to pee’
A Nigerian scientist and President/Director of Research at Lumos Laboratories Nigeria Limited, Ejikeme Patrick Nwosu, has received another patent on production of urine-based fertiliser. This has brought the number of patents on his name to five.

Nwosu, an industrial chemist, was in July 2021 awarded two invention patent rights of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for two innovations.

The Certificate of Registration of Utility Model Patent, with number NG/P/2022/149 was dated November 23, 2022, and signed by Registrar, Stella Ozo Ezenduka for the Patents and Design Act.

It reads: “President of Federal Republic of Nigeria and Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR.

“Whereas a request for the grant of a utility model patent has been made by Ejikeme Patrick Nwosu…

“For the sole use and advantage of an invention for: production of urine-based fertiliser and whereas the Federal Government being willing to encourage all invention which made be for public good, is please to accede to the request…”

Nwosu’s first patent was on development of Ezeugo Flask, while the other is on creation of Fire Retardant Paint using byproduct from Lumos Laboratories’ urine-to-energy processing.

Reacting to the new patent, Nwosu, who has a Bachelor of Science degree in Pure and Industrial Chemistry from Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Anambra State and a Master of Science degree in Organic Chemistry from the University of Ibadan, Oyo State, told The Guardian: “I’m glad to announce to you that I’ve been awarded another invention Patent Right on the work, production of urine-based fertiliser, by the Office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Soon, your urine can fetch you fortune, quote me!

“This has brought the number of Patents granted so far to six.

“I’m mostly glad seeing some of my childhood dreams coming true; to be a scientist, an inventor, achieving immortality through the powers of the intellect and so on.”

Nwosu further explained: “Few weeks ago at All On Hub Ikoyi, Lagos, I told the people present at the event that soon, they will be able to sell their urine in Nigeria. Also, in my recent meeting with one of the Assistant Inspector General of Police to discuss possibility of converting wastes from barracks into useful products and solutions. I reiterated that soon urine would be for sale in Nigeria. Few of them seemed to believe, while others laughed in disbelief, but today, fortunately the reality is with us as the Invention Patent Right of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on production of urine-based fertiliser has been awarded to us courtesy our years of dedicated hard work in and out of the laboratory.

“Urine is most abundant waste product on earth, an average adult passes out about one litre of this very useful product daily. Approximately, about eight billion litres of urine are generated everyday globally and about 200 million litres of this very important substance is dissipated on daily basis.

Ejikeme Nwosu

“Urine has some nutrients which the plants need for better growth and development, the same nutrients present in some conventional synthetic fertiliser. These nutrients include nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK).

“We developed an indigenous means of enriching common urine and boost it for use as safe organic fertiliser for application to farms. We also developed means of ensuring that any pathogens in the urine are removed or destroyed before application to farms. Our technology involves use of locally available materials to remove/reduce any heavy metals in the urine before use. Because the components from urine may vary from person to person based on their dietary consumptions we have also taken this into consideration by ensuring that our process involves boosting the final urine-based fertiliser to meet required standards. Don’t worry about potential adulteration of urine by people in event of possible purchase because we have developed smart tools that read the percentage of useful nutrients in ones urine.”

Nwosu said they had earlier developed a prototype urine-diverting toilet that harvests urine from point of use.

“Soon, people will be able to use public conveniences for free or even paid a token to pee. In order words, we can make money as we use our conveniences. This is a revolution that we will strive to popularise in Nigeria and beyond,” he said.

Nwosu said Lumos Laboratories is working round the clock to ensure that they create solutions to everyday problems using indigenous technology. “Right application of our innovations Nigeria will run out of wastes and can turn them into wealth and other useful solutions. Some more advanced countries like Sweden sometime ran out of wastes because of her intensive and dedicated recycling systems. We can do even better, we have all it takes,” he said.

The industrial chemist said results from some of their experimental farms show that urine-based fertilizer has more advantages compared to synthetic ones in terms of yield and environmental impacts.

He urged governments at all levels to look inwards, support innovation and indigenous technologies because this is one of the surest ways of moving the nation from a largely consuming country to a more productive one. “We must strive to produce what we consume and consume what we produce,” Nwosu said.

The first patent is on development of Ezeugo Flask while the other is on creation of Fire Retardant Paint using byproduct from Lumos Laboratories’ urine-to-energy processing.

Nwosu had told The Guardian: “From the best of my knowledge, we are the first to set up a pilot plant that converts urine into energy via a chemical reaction. Because we are the first, numbers of items needed to get things done were not on the shelves, we had to invent them. And that marked the creation and invention of Ticlob-Lumos Method, Patrium Flask Reactor and now Ezeugo Flask and Fire Retardant Paint.”

The organic chemist said the Fire Retardant Paint is a by-product with fire retardant properties and were converted into fire retardant paint, a paint that when coated on furniture etc. will not be burnt by fire.

On Ezeugo Flask, Ejikeme said: “Our by-product is a mixture of solvent, miscible solute and colloid; from our best of knowledge there is no known separation technique and equipment to purify the byproduct effectively. That marked the creation of Ezeugo Flask to do the job and this process can as well pass for a new separation technique coined Ezeugomisation.

“My late Dad, Ezeugo, will specifically be happy with these innovations. Thanks for your wonderful supports, before end of the year, I hope to get more innovations patented. Together, we can usher in a better world!”

On what the future holds, the organic chemist added: “It is obvious that our crude oil reserves will be exhausted in few decades to come. When this happens we will be forced to use other sources of fuel, but it would be more prudent to start acting prior to such state. Soon my discovery could replace fossil fuels in the near future.”

Among his scientific works are isolation of ammonia from human urine and Special theory of inorganic chemical reactions; projects he completed as an undergraduate and whose abstracts the American Chemical Society Book of Abstracts published in 2005. In 2011, Nwosu published a paper titled “Special theory of toxicity: Toxic properties of electron discovered”.

According to Nwosu’s findings, single electrons and lone pairs are the major contributors to toxicity in elements and compounds. Atoxopy was also introduced in the said paper to treat some special cases of toxicity. His coined chemistry term, atoxopy, has been translated in Italian, Spanish, Filipino, Chinese and other languages, while the pronunciation is also available on YouTube.

According to the company’s website, their research interests are in Renewable Energy, development of Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) treatment, conversion of waste lubricating oil into high quality ones, and development of wind/solar/biogas powered vehicles.