Researchers Develop New Technology to Generate Electricity from Plants

Researchers Develop New Technology to Generate Electricity from Plants

Plants are known to get their energy directly from the sun through photosynthesis. Now, the scientists are claiming that the vast, renewable and cheap source of energy could be available for the human use.

Ramaraja Ramasamy, a researcher at the University of Georgia, explained that during photosynthesis, sunlight helps plants split water atoms into oxygen and hydrogen, which produces electrons to power the plant's growth.

Ramasamy, with the school's Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center, has developed a latest technology that captures the electrons before the plant can use them.

He said that structures in the plant cells that are responsible for capturing and storing energy can be manipulated. They can be then attached to a carbon nanotube to block the pathway for the electron travel. And then, the electrons can be re-routed through the nanotube conductors to send them along a wire.

The experiment helped produce electric current levels 100 times more than those reported in similar systems.

Ramasamy said, "This approach may one day transform our ability to generate cleaner power from sunlight using plant-based systems".

The researchers said much more work is required to be done in order to make it more stable and improve the energy output of the device for commercialization.

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