Potato battery

Potatoes are great mashed, roasted, baked or in clocks. That's right, potatoes are nature's tastiest battery.

Potato battery

You may find the answer to your question. Why am I getting negative voltage and current readings? This simply means you either have your multimeter probes or connections to the copper and zinc electrodes switched. Refer to Figure 5 in the Procedure.

I cannot get the LED to light up. What should I do? Potato battery require a certain minimum voltage and current to light up. If your LED will not light up, follow the procedure to connect multiple potato batteries in series or parallel.

Each combination will increase either the voltage or the current but it is up to you to take measurements with your multimeter and find out which—we Potato battery not want to give the answer away!

How the Potato Clock works

However, it is also important to make sure your LED is connected correctly. LEDs only let current flow through them in one direction this is called "polarity".

So, if you connect your LED backwards, it will never light up, even if you have enough voltage and current to power it. Refer to Figure 7 in the Procedure and make sure you pay attention to how you connect the long and short legs of the LED.


I cannot get the buzzer to work. Just like the LED, the buzzer requires a certain amount of voltage and current to make noise. If you cannot get the buzzer to buzz, try connecting more potatoes in series or parallel as described in the procedure.

As with the LED, the buzzer only lets current flow through it in one direction, and will not work if you connect it backwards.

I still cannot get the LED or buzzer to work. Make sure you are using firm, fresh potatoes. You can try soaking your potatoes in water to improve their performance, but old, dried-out potatoes may not provide enough power for the buzzer and LED, even if you connect them correctly.

What settings should I use on my multimeter to measure voltage and current? The general rule of thumb for making measurements with a multimeter is to start with the next highest scale above the value you expect to measure. Then, move to a smaller scale if possible to improve measurement accuracy.

On the DVM multimeter that comes with the Science Buddies kit, these scales are labeled "20" and "m" in white on the upper left part of the dial. If you need help using a multimeter or if this is your first time using one, you should ask an adult for help, or refer to the Science Buddies resource How to Use a Multimeter.

Make sure you have your multimeter set up correctly, as shown in the Procedure starting with Figure 5.

Potato battery

Also make sure that all of your alligator clips are tightly connected to the multimeter probes and electrodes. If a single alligator clip comes loose, that will cause the multimeter to read 0.

Can I power a larger device like an MP3 player or cell phone with a potato battery? Unfortunately, many misleading videos on the internet claim that you can charge such devices using just a couple of fruits or vegetables, or even by plugging a USB cable directly into a piece of fruit!

These claims have several serious problems. First, as you probably discovered during your science project, a couple of potatoes can at best produce only a few milliamps of current.In a potato battery, the electrical energy is generated by two chemical reactions that happen at the electrodes (the copper and zinc metal strips).

Because copper is more electronegative than zinc, it tends to attract electrons more easily than zinc. How the Potato Clock works. A potato battery is an electrochemical battery, otherwise known as an electrochemical cell.

A potato battery project is the last in a series of fruit and veggie battery projects included on this site.

How to Make a Potato Battery

Many versions are available, but unless you want to get fancy with the voltmeter, fruit batteries make great science projects for kids since they are both inexpensive and relatively easy to perform. Potato battery science project is a simple experiment which demonstrates how a pair of different metals and electrolyte can produce electric current.

It's fun and . Mar 15,  · How to make a potato battery. All you need is a potato, penny, copper wire, and a galvanized nail. You can use several potatoes to power a small light bulb. A battery is a way to store electrical energy.

Potato battery

For a battery to work it needs to have 3 things, two electrodes (metals, one + and one -) and electrolytes (minerals).

Potato Battery | Clock | Science Fair Project | Energy | Chemical | Electrochemical