Scientists, including one of Indian origin, have transformed a piece of wood into a flexible membrane that generates power from the same type of electric current that the human body runs on.
This energy is generated using charged channel walls and other unique properties of the wood’s natural nanostructures, according to University of Maryland.With technology, researchers can use a small temperature difference to efficiently generate a voltage.
Trees grow channels that move water between the roots and the leaves. These are made up of fractally-smaller channels, and at the level of a single cell, channels just nanometres or less across.
The team has harnessed these channels to regulate ions, according to the study published in the journal Nature Materials. The researchers used basswood, which is a fast-growing tree with low environmental impact.