The Synthetic Urine Discovery

Each time you urinate, you are flushing down a substance that has many uses in society. Urine contains a by-product called urea. Urea has a number of uses throughout the world. In fact, there are hundreds of uses for urea, and we simply flush it down the toilet numerous times each day. Many employers test for fake urine when completing drug testing.

What is Urea Used For?

farmingOne of the most common uses for urea occurs in farming. Urea helps put nitrogen in the soil. Some lotions contain urea. Urea helps to moisturize and hydrate the skin. Urea can also be added to fuel cells, used to reduce diesel fuel pollution, and manipulate a variety of proteins in a laboratory setting. As you can see, there are so many uses for urea that we have never even realized.

In the past, it was believed that urea was only produced from organisms. This meant the amount of urea available was limited because it had to be harvested. This changed when a chemist named Friedrich Wohler was researching how to create ammonium cyanate. This well-known 19th-century chemist was having difficulty, and the end result was something amazing.

experimentsEach time he completed an experiment, an impure white powder was produced. He used a variety of chemicals to determine the correct solution. He used lead cyanate and combined it with ammonium hydroxides. This time, the white, useless powder that was created was pure, which gave him an idea of what the substance was. He began doing a variety of lab tests and soon found that he had created synthetic urine. Because of his experiments, he created synthetic urine by accident.

This experiment would have lasting implications for many years to come. Although he had been working on another experiment, he ended up creating something much greater than he first realized. In fact, the urea created has a multitude of uses in the products that we use every day. Although fake urine was discovered by accident, it is now used to mass produce urea. Urea is used in a variety of products that are needed for everyday life, including hydrating lotions, pollution control methods, and fertilizers.