When we place two dissimilar metals in an acidic fruit, a small amount of electricity is generated. The amount of current produced depends on the size of the fruit, the distance between the electrodes, and the acidity of the fruit. The citrus fruit juice contains high levels of acid and this acidity helps conduct electricity. This article will explain the chemical reactions at the electrodes and the role of acidity.
Acidity plays a role in chemical reactions at the electrodes
The main ingredient in citrus juices is citric acid. As an electrolyte, citric acid facilitates the flow of electricity between the electrodes of a lemon battery. Electrolytes are substances found throughout the human body and are used for transmitting electrical impulses. Electrolytes are made up of dissolved salts and acids that donate positively charged hydrogen atoms. Ions can move freely between electrodes because they are attracted to the opposite charge.
The Maillard reaction is an example of a chemical reaction in which the carbonyl group of reducing sugars combines with a free amino group. This process is responsible for the brown color of certain fruits and vegetables. The color is caused by melanins and degradation products of L-ascorbic acid. Citrus juice concentrates have the ability to resist Maillard browning.
Citric acid is the electrolyte in a wet cell
Many fruits, like lemons, contain citric acid, a substance that conducts electricity. Free ions in electrolytes are attracted to an opposite or like-charged substance. When inserted into a wet cell, these ions form an electric current and cause an electric charge to be produced. A lemon contains several wet cells, and one lemon can produce about 7/10 of a volt of electricity.
The electrolyte in a wet battery is composed of citric acid and two dissimilar metals. The fruit’s size and distance from the electrodes will influence the electric current. This experiment can be repeated several times over for a variety of fruits, including lemons and oranges. You can even make a homemade solar panel by using citrus fruits.
Copper is the electrode material in a supercapacitor
You can make a fruit battery that generates enough electricity to light a bulb. Citrus fruits already contain the electrolyte needed to store energy, but it is not enough to run an LED bulb. Citrus fruits contain a chemical called citric acid, which conducts electricity. This chemical reaction requires a strong conducting medium. The electrode materials used to create the fruit battery are copper and zinc.
The albedo of an orange peel can be used to produce carbon for a citrus supercapacitor. In addition, this carbon is useful in the food industry as it contains an albedo that can be utilized as electrode material in a supercapacitor. Carbon from pomelo peels has been studied for its potential in food production, oil extraction, and supercapacitors.