Photograph shows the awesome power contained in one orange

first_imgSurely a small part of your youth was spent experimenting with the classic lemon battery, right? It’s a classic mainly because it’s a great tool for teaching about the science behind electricity. Although, lemons are a little lumpy and unattractive, and they don’t photograph very well. Photographer Caleb Charland made a slight tweak to the experimental setup, and used an orange to get this awesome picture.The nails inserted into the slices of orange are coated in zinc, which acts as the electrode along with a bit of copper wire wrapped around them. The citric acid of the orange serves as a reasonably effective electrolyte. As the zinc electrode sheds zinc ions into the electrolyte (the orange), electrons are transmitted to the copper electrode. Along the way, they can be used to power a light source, as in this image.Lemons are often used because they tend to have more citric acid and thus a lower pH. That means the light you attach glows more brightly. It turns out that oranges wouldn’t make the best classroom experiments — this image is a 14 hour exposure. Anything shorter and you wouldn’t have been able to see the eerie glow emanating from the concealed LED light source.It’s actually very clever how Charland wired up the individual slices in series to act like a multi-cell battery. It might not be the kind of thing you can set up on your nightstand, but still a really stunning photo of science in action.via Caleb Charlandlast_img read more