Home » Uncategorized » Artificial Leaf Could Power Home on 1 Gallon of Water a Day
artificial-solar-leaf

Artificial Leaf Could Power Home on 1 Gallon of Water a Day

Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have created the first feasible artificial leaf. While the leaf doesn’t look anything like its plant inspiration, it works in a similar way. The leaf is a solar cell the size of a poker card, and it mimics the process of photosynthesis by using water and sunlight converting it into energy. In this case the energy is electricity.

The scientists have suggested that the artificial leaf could be an inexpensive source of electricity used to power homes in developing countries.

When placed in a single gallon of water in bright sunlight, the device could produce enough electricity to supply a house in a developing country with electricity for a day. The device could be dropped into anything from a bucket of water to a puddle. In laboratory studies, the artificial leaf prototype operated continuously for 45 hours without a drop in activity.

The artificial leaf produces electricity by splitting water into its two components – hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen and oxygen gases are then stored in a fuel cell, which uses the two materials to produce electricity. The fuel cell could be located on top of a house or beside it.

The artificial leaf is made from silicon, electronics and catalysts, which help to speed up chemical reactions. Unlike previous attempts to create an artificial leaf, this one is made of inexpensive, widely available materials. The catalysts are made of nickel and cobalt, which are highly efficient at splitting water into its two components.

According to the scientists, the leaf is about 10 times more efficient at carrying out photosynthesis than a natural leaf. The scientists hope to boost the efficiency of the artificial leaf much higher in the future. Hopefully they’ll soon be able to manufacture the leaf for widespread use and help out millions of people who could use the electricity.

[Read]

Photo Prototype: Daily Mail

About Silvia Pikal

Check Also

wii-oculus-rift-hoverboard

Try Oculus Rift And Wii To Roam Around On The Back To The Future Hoverboard

Check out how you can fly in virtual space by using an Oculus Rift and a Wii Balance Board.

131129-amz

Amazon Appstore for Android Holiday Deals, Including Free Apps

There are tons of deals from the Amazon Appstore that will be offered starting now and throughout the holiday shopping season. They say that they will have "hundreds of titles that are eitehr free... or available between 50-90% off" the regular price.

131129-google

Black Friday: Google Play Store Apps, Games and Content on Sale All Weekend

Case in point, if you head over to the Google Play Store right now, you'll find that Google is celebrating all Cyber Weekend with discounts on all sorts of content. This includes many popular apps and games

131129-gtab

Black Friday Deal: Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1-Inch for $100 Off

Did you manage to score any epic Black Friday deals this morning? Are you still ...

131128-diy

Arduino Co-Creator Releases Plans for $200 DIY Mobile Phone

Mellis was one of the people who came up with the now hugely popular Arduino platform and now he has come up with plans for people to build their own cell phone for about $200 in parts.

131128-apple

No Discounts for Apple Black Friday, Just Free Gift Cards

If you were hoping to save yourself some cash as you brave the Black Friday shopping crowds, you'll want to go somewhere other than the official Apple Stores.

  • Bagoplastic

    I can use it right here, right now! It solves the ‘nukes/no nukes’ problem in a single stroke. And saves everyone thousands of dollars a year. Finally, a break for the middle class!

  • Soul_train21

    Why in developing countries?? It could and should be used all round the world :S

    • Dreezy

      Maybe because they need it most?