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Friday, January 25, 2008

Lemon Electricity Experiment

I recently investigated on how lemons and other fruits and vegetables can create electricity. I predicted that a lemon or lemons could do this. After all these weeks, I have found that with so many lemons you may be able to light a light bulb or run a motor. I have learned about how the lemon’s acid creates electricity if you roll it with pressure. I’ve also learned about how electricity runs through a circuit. The copper and zinc act as the two different metals or electrodes in a battery and the citric acid in the lemon acts as the acidic solution or electrolyte in the battery. Another thing that I learned is that lemons can produce a dim glow from an LED. I have lastly found that one lemon can produce a voltage of .906 volts but you can wire two or more to it. I’ve learned that electric current is a flow of atomic particles called electrons. Some materials, called conductors, allow electrons to flow through them. Electrons will flow from the “-“ electrode of a battery, through a conductor, towards the “+” electrode of a battery.


Here are more studies from this experiment with lemons to see if they can generate some electricity:

Materials

1. 1+ lemons
2. 1+ pieces of copper wire
3. 1+ pieces of zinc
4. Insulated wires
5. Wire clippers (alligator)
6. Sandpaper
7. 1 LED/flashlight bulb
8. Multimeter

Steps

1. Use the sandpaper to smooth any rough spots on the copper and zinc.
2. Squeeze the lemon gently by rolling it but try not to rupture the skin.
3. Push the copper wire and zinc into the lemon as close together as possible but not touching.
4. Wrap the insulated wires around the copper wire and zinc.
5. connect the wires to the LED in order to see it light up!


Question/problem

Can lemon create/produce electricity?

Hypothesis

I predict it will take two or more lemons to create enough power to light up a light or power a small motor.

Results

I found it very difficult to produce enough electricity to power a light bulb or motor. I was able to get a voltage reading on the multimeter and get a very dim light from a LED bulb. I started with just one lemon and added up to five, which allowed me to get the light to work for a few seconds.

Conclusion

I predicted that lemons could create electricity. Upon further investigation, I found that they could in fact produce very small amounts of electricity. I found that there was enough electricity to power a very low voltage flashlight bulb when enough lemons were connected together.



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