Researchers Discover How to Use Living Plants to Generate Usable Electricity

Tech Swarm

Solar paneling is usually the first thing that comes to mind when someone thinks of harvesting energy from the sun.

Solar power modules essentially replicate how plants absorb photons from light energy. Well, instead of using solar panels that replicate plants, dutch company Plant-e is using the plants themselves.

This technology brings new meaning to the term “power plant”.

While collecting energy from plants is not a new concept, Plant-e is the first company to utilize the technology without harming the plants. The process of collecting energy from plants isn’t extremely complicated. Microbes break down waste sugars leftover from the plant during photosynthesis, and turns them into protons and electrons; then Plant-e uses electrodes to mobilize electrons into usable energy. Imagine using your lawn to power your electric car, or your green roof to power your house!

This technology is still in developmental stages and needs to catch up to solar and wind turbine technology in order to compete in open markets. Plant-e founder and CEO, Marjolein Helder, believes this technology adds a new angle to the pursuit of clean renewable energy.

Starry Sky, and a similar project an hour’s drive away, near Plant-e’s Wageningen headquarters, are the two first commercial installations of the company’s emerging technology. Both power lighting, but the company also sells Wi-Fi hot spots, mobile chargers, and rooftop electricity modules, all fueled by the byproducts of living plants.

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After years of research and a series of unpleasant experiences concerning the current child protection services system, Alec Cope decided to combat the cancerous corruption through information. Freelance writing articles as a form of protest and distributing them throughout his former high-school and local area, Alec struck special chords with whomever he was in contact with.

Alec has been involved in activism such as sit down protests as well as Idle No More gatherings. Being independent for the majority of his time, Alec became a member of the WeAreChange family to assist one of the organizations that inspired him to become active in the first place. With a larger platform and positive support Alec has committed the majority of his time to research, writing, and maintaining social media with the goal to continue expanding the awakening sweeping throughout all levels of society.

Growing up within a rural area in Northern Michigan as well as being a native American descendant, Alec is seeking to expose environmental abuse in his state as well as globally. A high-school dropout, Alec chases his passion for writing and empowering individuals while showing any isolated person that they too can overcome the odds with a community that will support them. Alec lives in the lower peninsula of Michigan near Kalamazoo.

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