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A New Use for Spinach?

Spinach power is not just for Popeye, it could work for computers too. U.S. researchers have made electrical cells that are powered by plant proteins. The biologically based solar cells, which convert light into electrical energy, should be efficient and cheap to manufacture. They could even be used to coat and power laptops, providing a portable source of green energy. The prototype cells still need a little refinement. At present, they can generate current for up to 21 days; then they give up. So alternatives that last longer are needed. Still, it seems that spinach--an excellent source of nutrients for protein nutritional types--could really be an inexpensive and clean source of power.

Nature June 28, 2004

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