Humble potatoes can now be a good energy source too in parts of the world lacking electrical infrastructure. Yissum Research Development Company Ltd., the technology transfer arm of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, has introduced solid organic electric battery based upon treated potatoes. Potato battery is a simple, sustainable, robust device to generate electricity. The electrolysis process uses zinc and copper electrodes along with a slice of boiled potato. The use of boiled potato helps increase the electric power up to 10 fold over the untreated potato and enables the battery to work for days and even weeks. Besides it helps reduce the internal salt bridge resistance of the potato battery thus optimizing the performance of conventional batteries.
The treated potato battery generates energy five to 50 times cheaper than commercially available 1.5 Volt D cells and Energizer E91 cells, respectively. It also at least 6 times economical than kerosene lamps making it an environment friendly and inexpensive solution to meeting the energy needs in the developing world lacking electrical infrastructure.