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University of Washington Scientists Draw Electricity from Trees

12 September 2009 No Comment

Technology.am (Sept.12, 2009) — University of Washington (UW) researchers have discovered a new source of electricity by trees.

tree-electricity-mdThis study is a follow up of MIT last year’s study that plants generate a voltage of up to 200 millivolts.

Now researchers used nails on the trees and connected a voltmeter to find that big leaf maples generate a steady voltage of up to a few hundred millivolts.

The team then developed a boost converter that takes a low incoming voltage and stores it to produce a greater output.

The custom boost converter works for input voltages of as little as 20 millivolts and produces an output voltage of 1.1 volts, enough to run low-power sensors.

The circuit is built from parts measuring 130 nm and consumes on average just 10 nanowatts of power during operation.

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