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fingered dad invents washing machine-sized incinerator that turns rubbish and food waste into fuel

A father in the United Kingdom has invented a washing-machine sized incinerator. Nik Spencer, 48, envisions the household unit becoming a fixture in homes across the nation. The HERU unit takes trash such as plastic coffee cups and turns it into fuel that can heat a house. Food waste can also be placed inside. After being left to slowly burn overnight, the trash is converted into a charcoal-like substance. That is then used to heat a household boiler. (SOUNDBITE) [Nik Spencer, inventor] "I can see a time in the future where waste collection is completely eradicated and the only materials being recycled are glass and metal. It is completely inefficient to collect recycling from a home to be taken to a site to be incinerated to generate heat to be used to fuel someone’s home.” Spencer said one full load of rubbish, or about 5.5 lbs, produces almost half of a household’s hot water. The units are currently being trialed in multiple places and could hit the market by 2020. Spencer said each unit will cost an estimated £3,500 ($4,728).