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electricity producing tree

Use photosynthesis to directly create electricity
  [vote for,

[edited] Please read idea carefully. It has layed out all practical elements and stages, each well known, to accomplish the task. A follow up annotation has been added.

By genetic engineering, plant into the krebs cycle following the mitochondria working extra hard after a nice chlorophyl session with a lot of light. Instead of moving the proton freed into NADH and ATP get it to run an electric eel's modified electric organ (corrected: was Weberian apparatus).

Then use concentrating mirrors to work on the tree. You get everything: oxygen freed, carbon dioxide turned to sugar, a nice cooling effect, a nicer greener and healthier looking landscape and electricity! Voilla...

pashute, Jan 31 2011

(?) That pesky step 2 http://annieinfinit...-occurs-cartoon.png
Bane of many a great idea [doctorremulac3, Feb 01 2011]

http://www.huffingt...trici_n_283244.html [rcarty, Feb 02 2011]

Mitochondrial Turbocharger Mitochondrial_20Turbocharger
This idea in reverse? [Wrongfellow, Feb 02 2011]

Photosynthesis ion extraction http://www.oppapers...-Solar-Cells/562661
[pashute, Feb 04 2011]

A solar array shaped using a tree shape http://www.popsci.c...-fibonacci-sequence
and the Fibonacci sequence [theircompetitor, Aug 19 2011]


       Unless someone who knows what they're talking about comes forward pretty soon to say that this idea is basically workable, then it'll get [mfd]'ed for genetic engineering magic.
hippo, Jan 31 2011

       Hey, I'm a pretty forward someone who knows about talking and comes too soon... wait, let me read [hippo]'s post again.   

       Ok nevermind. Good luck with everything.
rcarty, Jan 31 2011

       I had actually thought of this once. The plan I came up with was:   

       1- Decide to have trees generate electricity,   

       2- Figure out how to do it,   

       3- Have lots of free electricity from trees.   

       Phases 1 and 3 were solid, but I got a little hung up on phase 2. That being said, it's not something that I'd discount as patently impossible. You've got energy in the way of sun, you've got the tree that already changes solar energy to chemical energy. Figure out how to turn that chemical energy into electrical and you're good to go. Just gotta get around that pesky number 2. (See link)
doctorremulac3, Feb 01 2011

       This has worked IRL, sort of. The energetic electrons produced from photosynthesis have been linked to conductors and produce electricity from photosynthesis directly.   

       However, no GM was involved. I don't know enough about how electric eels work, but I somehow doubt that animal structures and tissues could be engineered into plants with anything short of sufficently-advanced magic. Besides, the plant needs those protons to keep the photosynthetic cycle running.
Hive_Mind, Feb 01 2011

       If you look at it on a geographic time scale, we are already making electricity with trees, via coal.
Custardguts, Feb 01 2011

       Man, I'd hate to get my kite close to one of these.
RayfordSteele, Feb 01 2011

       It could also stop people nipping behind trees for a sneaky pee.
coprocephalous, Feb 02 2011

       [marked-for-deletion] magic, and an unseemly reliance on genetic engineering
hippo, Feb 02 2011

       Why not combine this with the Mitochondrial Turbocharger, to achieve... er, not very much, I suppose.
Wrongfellow, Feb 02 2011

       OK, here goes. How to do it:   

       Step 1: Electrocyte aparatus component: The eel's electrogenesis has been fairly studied. Its workings are understood. This tissue can be grown appart and independently of the living eel. The tissue can and already HAS BEEN induced to reproduce while in vitro (while sepparated from the living animal), and the genetic sequence for the Elecrtrocytes in several types of electric fish and other deep sea creatures has been determined. The input to this process is ATP, and sodium and potassium ions.   

       Step 2. Getting electrons from the water by energy from light: The Photosynthesis - which is the Chloroplast activity = the Calvin-Benson cycle has thoroughly been studied and the biochemical steps for breaking away one proton from the water (which is oxygen and two protons - with 2 electrons attached to those protons) is well understood and known. Further down the process the second proton is broken off too (if I recall correctly attached to NADP). The process of changing the biochemical paths of this "cycle" (called so because the mostly organic chemicals in the process are re-used) have also been carried out for at least 15 years now.   

       3. Produce electric buildup: So, one of three:   

       3a. Either gather the positive and negative ions (don't remember exactly NADP+ ? CH2O-- ) and instead of accumulating ATP for the tree's buildup process (of course any vegetation can be used), take it directly to build up an electric voltage and run a power station from it.   

       3b. Or use the ATP from the photosynthesis to feed a section of the cell which will work as an electrocyte - pumping the potassium and sodium ions which are abundant in the sea to create a voltage accross the cell. If an artificial electrocyte can be made based on the real one, then it is most probably a small step to geneticly engineer one.   

       3c. Or create a tissue of electrocytes immersed in seawater, that is fed from the photosynthesis products (in the usual way for plants, and similar to how the cells of mongrove roots grow).   

       Yes, Wrongfellow is Right.
pashute, Feb 03 2011

       how about a giggly mass gelatinous tree with skeletal branches that compress electrlytic ceramics at the roots which is also the source of it's giggliness
rcarty, Feb 04 2011

       I was serious. rcarty - your link is about using a side effect of tree acidity (and therefore ion concentration). My idea is to use photosynthesis directly or almost directly for creating electricity.   

       Please delete your last anno.
pashute, Feb 11 2011

       This idea seemed like the best place to attach this annotation about a brilliant experiment
theircompetitor, Aug 19 2011


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