A Single Boiled Potato Can Power A Light For 40 Days

Most people's mental images of potatoes include three main dishes: french fries, cheesy scalloped potatoes, and mashed potatoes with gravy. Are potatoes ever going to cross your mind as a potential home energy source? A group of researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have been playing around with "potato power" for a while now, hoping to find a way to provide energy to those in remote areas who don't have access to traditional power sources.

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Scientist Haim Rabinowitch claims that one potato can power an entire room's worth of LED lights for forty days. An simple metal plate, some cables, and some LED lights may transform a potato into a viable alternative to traditional batteries. Creating a battery from organic materials is as simple as combining two metals: zinc for the negative electrode (the anode) and copper for the positive electrode (the cathode), according to the BBC. Energy is released as electrons travel from one substance to another, as occurs in a chemical interaction between the acid within the potato and the zinc and copper.