Surprising Uses of Urine
Urine is primarily made up of urea, the main component responsible for its practical uses. In history, urine has a very peculiar function - Ancient Romans, for example, used it to remove stains on clothes and even for tooth-whitening. Today, urine has a plethora of applications. Urea can be used to get nitrogen into the soil in organic fertilizers - this is a very essential process as nitrogen plays a role in plant growth and development. Urea is also believed to be good for the skin due to its moisturizing property. Nowadays, it is useful for cosmetic product assessment and the making of cosmetic ingredients, such as used in hand and body lotions and facial creams. Urea also serves as catalytic converter which helps reduce pollutants from diesel gas. Another important application of urine is energy conversion. Urine is an indispensable component of fuel cell, a device designed to convert chemical energy from fuel into electrical energy. Meanwhile, the raw material in urine (urea) is said to have effects on protein stability, which explains its use for all forms of body protein manipulation in laboratories.
Refutation of Vitalism
Since the historical past, many people believed that urea is entirely organic material and cannot be produced artificially. According to the idea of Vitalism, only organic organisms can produce organic life and its components, and living and non-living worlds are unrelated and even mutually exclusive. The concept of Vitalism was refuted by Friedrich Wöhler, a reputable German chemist, when he experimented on producing ammonium cyanate.
His numerous experiments yielded nothing but an unknown white powder filled with different impurities. Once Wöhler combined ammonium hydroxide with lead cyanate and again, resulted in the same white powder, but uncontaminated this time. To his curiosity, he began doing crucial tests to find out what the white powder actually is, until he found out – it is dehydrated urine! Thus, he not only became the first man on Earth who produced organic material from inorganic components and disproved Vitalism, but also created the synthetic urine.
Clever Uses of Synthetic Urine
At present, fake pee has quite a number of modern applications. Besides being used for the calibration of drug testing equipment, synthetic urine is used for cheating urine drug test. Contemporary artificial urine is indistinguishable from the natural human urine, so people who want to hide traces of illicit drugs in their body can use it to substitute their own samples. It is worth noting that both natural and synthetic urine have similar levels of pH as well as creatinine, uric acid, and other minerals, and current urine analysis cannot detect whether the sample provided is natural or fake. In the majority of cases, synthetic urine works in concealing drug metabolites, provided that it is of high quality and properly stored and used. You must remember that when used, synthetic urine needs to have temperature about 98F (similar to human urine) to convince the lab staff that the specimen provided is natural.
Minor applications of fake urine nowadays also include diaper testing and urine therapy. In urine therapy, it is consumed or massaged onto the skin for therapeutic effect. Modern claims and findings revealed that urea has anti-cancer effect.