Sunday, April 24, 2011

Houses Can Now Be Powered by Artifical Leaves

Creating electricity out of leaves. Sounds strange, but thats exactly what was presented at the 241st National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.
This device is called an artificial leaf, which is powered by an advanced solar cell that is inspired by natural photosynthesis (the chemical process through which green plants convert sunlight and water into energy.)
This invention is the size of a playing card & is made from silicon, electronics & catalysts, materials that aren't very costly are widely available & highly stable. These substances also help to speed up the chemical reactions that don't even occur otherwise.
When placed in a gallon of water in sunlight, the device can generate enough electricity to supply a normal home in a developing country for a whole day. Making every home self sufficient in its electricity needs & become its own power station.
The power comes from splitting water into its basic elements; hydrogen(H) and Oxygen(O). Both these gases would be then stored in a fuel cell located either on the top or beside the house, and it would use the two materials to produce electricity.
Right now the artificial leaf is ten times more efficient at carrying out photosynthesis than a natural leaf, & scientists believe that they can boost its efficiency in the future.
This innovative research was presented at the 241st National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.

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