Authors: Rakesh sil Sarma
Artificial leaves are an emerging form of renewable energy sources collecting energy from the sun and wind and converting it into electrical energy. The leaves are distributed throughout artificial trees and plants, and when operating at optimum efficiency, it can supply whole household with electricity. recently with the emerging nanotechnology, scientists are working on the new content called the nanoleaves that will help to produce electricity with the help of solar power which can serve our future energy demands.In the near future it is expected to face a huge energy crisis. In this paper i intend to light on how exactly the nanoleaves can be achieved and what are the future aspect and prospects.
BIOMIMICRY/ARTIFICIAL LEAVES TECHNOLOGY:
- Biomimicry, a relatively modern technology, uses nanoleaves attached to artificial trees and plants to capture solar energy. These exclusively designed nanoleaves contain tiny photo voltaic and thermo voltaic modules that gather heat and light from solar energy, converting this into electrical energy.
- The design of the nanoleaves is based on the principles of photosynthesis, a natural process where plants extract the light from solar energy, and along with CO2 from the atmosphere, convert it to starch and oxygen, the oxygen being emitted to the atmosphere.
- However, nanoleaves development has gone a step further, in that they are capable of harvesting the thermal and light energy from the sun’s energy and convert it into electricity. The stem of the nanoleaves are designed to collect kinetic energy from the wind, which is also converted into electrical energy.
- Nano leaf or artificial consist Nano-piezoelectric generators (graphene coated with zinc oxide nanowires).
- If leaf is getting stress due to wind or rain, then piezoelectric layer produces the electricity.
- Two spatially separated electrodes coated with catalysts placed in water.
- Sunlight creates a wireless current that sparks the reactions below.
- Cathode produced hydrogen, and anode produces oxygen.
- In absence of geo-engineering, the effects on environment caused by CO2 over next 40 years will persist globally for 500-2,000 years.
- Atmospheric CO2 levels were between 210-300 ppm for last 420,000 years .
- We are hoping to stabilize it in the 550-650 ppm range.
- In order to do this, by 2050 we would need as much carbon neutral power as the amount of total energy produced today.
- Here, we are using only solar energy and wind energy which are the renewable energy sources.
- There is no requirement of large amount of Space.
- The maintenance cost is negligible.
- Can be fitted anywhere, may be at top of the building else in garden or in open areas etc.
- It will add beauty to the Nature.
- Reduce Global Green House gas emission.
- Increase Agricultural Production.
- Water splitting reaction is highly corrosive.
- The oxidizing power causes electrodes to degrade.
- Same with natural photosynthesis, but plants can rebuild.
- Turner’s cell lasted only 20 hours.
- It is very difficult to interface the nanocells into the trees leaves.
- Cost of this technology is very high.
- Very difficult to interface the inverter to the tree trunk.
- By these nanoleaves we can try to solve our future energy demands .Besides high energy generation it is eco-friendly method of generating power with no sign of pollution. To Use this electricity in driving the car.
- By Increasing the dimensions of leaves to increase the production of electricity.
- To use in the heavy transport systems.
- To make efficient the Nano-tree for Photosynthesis And many more.
- Improving agricultural production and crop yields in upcoming future.
These super eco friendly, highly efficient synthetic trees will make use of renewable energy from the sun along with wind power, which are an effective clean and environmentally sound medium of gathering solar radiation and wind energy. By the use of these trees the energy crisis can be dealt with in an efficient, non polluting manner.
About Author / Additional Info:
PhD Research Scholar(ICAR-SRF) ,Department of Plant Physiology,Institute of Agricultural Science,BHU,Varanasi.