If we strip away the glittery labels and marketing hype, all a battery contains are two electrodes made of compatible conductive materials. Plus an electrolyte allowing these electrodes to exchange ions and send electricity through a device. And possibly light up your life if there’s a light bulb in the circuit.
Materials to Light Up Your Life with Lemons
Our lead-acid batteries use a diluted sulfuric acid solution as electrolyte. In our experiment, we use lemons because their juice is acidic too. You are going to need the following materials to make a lemon battery:
- Four nice fresh juicy lemons – unfrozen
- Four shiny new galvanized nails – three inches long
- A length of household copper wire – one foot long
- Five thin alligator clip wires each – one foot long
- A small LED light to light up your life with a smile
The above dimensions are indications only. Don’t fret if your materials are not the exact same length. First, remove the insulation from the copper wire and cut it into four equal lengths. Now watch this video, after which we explain the theory behind a lemon light. Then you can make your own using the materials on the list.
How Your Lemon Battery Will Light the Bulb
The copper wires and galvanized nails will be the electrodes. The juice in the lemon is going to be the electrolyte. After we connect the electrodes to the circuit including the LED, they will exchange ions and electricity will flow through the light bulb.
One lemon does not make enough electricity to light up your life and so we use four in this experiment. Try adding a fifth lemon and the light should shine brighter. Now try the same experiment with grapefruit, oranges, and kiwi fruit. Which works best, and why?
Preview Image: Lemon Battery Test
Video Share Link: https://youtu.be/ctsZzrJC7Kc