This Off-Grid Lamp Harvests Its Energy From Plants

Oct 21, 2022by Olivia Harper - F&F

Imagine a world where street lights could be connected to trees, forests could become power plants, and rice fields could produce food and electricity for local populations… well, this is what the founder of a photosynthesis-powered lamp is saying could very well become our reality. Let’s check it out!

The First Atmospheric Lamp Powered By Living Plants

Now this is truly green energy like we have never seen before. In the past, we’ve seen innovations that integrate plants with sustainability, such as the plant wall air filter, but this plant-powered atmospheric lamp is the first of its kind. Created by Dutch designer Ermi van Oers, the Living Light generates electricity from plants by harnessing the process of photosynthesis.

With plans to scale up the technology to power entire smart cities, the Living Light uses microorganisms to convert the chemical energy produced during photosynthesis into an electric current. This incredible lamp is designed to be fully self-sufficient, so it can function off-grid, rather than needing to be plugged into an electrical socket!

Photosynthesising Plant LampPhotosynthesising Plant Lamp

Image: Dezeen

The Living Light Illuminates When You Touch Its Leaves!

The Living Light encases a plant inside a glass tube. As the plant photosynthesises, it releases organic compounds into a soil chamber below. The organic matter is then broken down by bacteria, assisted through a microbial fuel cell – a system that mimics bacterial interactions in nature. When this occurs, electrons are created and transported away from the soil.

The electric current is passed along a wire and fed into a ring fitted with LEDs. These light up when someone touches the plant's leaves — We can only imagine how mystical that would be! Van Oers says that cities could be powered exclusively via plants in a similar way, replacing the electric grid with a more sustainable microbial energy system.

Glass Dome Living LightGlass Dome Living Light

Image: Dezeen

The Environment Generates Electricity While We Can Still Enjoy Nature

The Living Light only produces a small amount of energy, however, the designer has ambitions to majorly advance the lamp. She’s already applying the technology to public spaces and is lighting up an entire park in Rotterdam!

“What is more beautiful than getting electricity from living plants?” said Marjolein Helder the CEO Plant-e. “Your environment is able to generate electricity while you are still able to enjoy nature.”

Van Oers said that she hopes we come to a point where every plant pot is provided with this technology, and we don’t know any better than that plants are part of our energy system. We are so excited about her vision and also hope to see these developments!

What do you think of the Living Light? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!

We love that the Living Light could enable nature to gain a higher economical value and create more green spaces so that biodiversity can flourish, while also lowering greenhouse gas emissions at the same time!

For more stories about sustainable innovations, check out our Eco News category and the blogs below.

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