A Battery at Your Fingertips Today

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A battery as we generally know it contains one or more cells inside a case. These convert the energy in their chemicals into the electricity we use to power millions of devices. In the process, their electrons pass through an electrolyte. Today, we are going to show you how to have a battery at your fingertips. But first, we need to ask a question, why does a battery need a case at all?

Why Does a Battery Need a Case?

A battery does not need a case, strictly speaking. Unless it has a liquid electrolyte inside, that could otherwise flow away. However, commercial batteries all have cases to protect us from the chemicals inside. Then the manufacturers pretty them up so we buy them in the store. Besides, where else would they put the small print only kids can make out.

Would You Like a Battery at Your Fingertips Today?

You are going to need the following materials to make a battery as explained by the teacher in the movie:

  • A sheet of aluminum foil folded square say six by six inches
  • A similar-sized copper plate from a hardware or online store
  • Two pieces of insulated wire with crocodile clips at each end
  • A simple multimeter set to measure current flow in amps
  • A work surface made of non-conductive material like plastic

You are going to be the electrolyte when you have a battery at your fingertips today!

How Science Causes the Electricity to Flow

When you press your fingers – or your hands – on the two plates, the sweat on them becomes an electrolyte. This ‘gate-keeper’ material allows electrons to flow through your body between the plates. We can see proof of this in the movement of the multimeter readout. This is so cool! We learn something new every day in the wonderful world of batteries.


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Preview Image: Battery at Your Fingertips

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About Author


I tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will not deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time. My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast. I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned. Richard Farrell

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