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Electricity from rice plants

Electricity from rice plants

T122/0096

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Credit

VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Electricity from rice plants. Researcher holding a meter to measure the electrical output between electrodes placed in a pot of flooded rice plants. Anaerobic bacteria, such as Geobacter sp., that exist in the sediment colonise the anode electrode and oxidise organic matter. During the oxidation process, the bacteria can directly transfer electrons from the organic matter to the anode. The electrons flow to the cathode along wires and generate electricity. Bacteria such as Geobacter could one day be used to provide a cheap and renewable source of alternative energy. Photographed in 2007 at the University of Massachusetts, USA.

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