Lamp Harvests Energy From Plants

Lamp Harvests Energy From Plants
Design

Living Light aims to create a new connection between humans, nature and technology

Emma Hutchings
  • 17 july 2017

Product designer Ermi van Oers has created a lamp that harvests energy from the electrons released through the photosynthetic process of a plant. Living Light merges nature and technology, changing light from something artificial to something personal by making plants part of our energy system.

Fascinated by biodesign, the designer researched microbial energy, which is energy generated by bacteria and harvested by microbial fuel cells. For her graduation project, she collaborated with research group Plant-e, a startup focused on applying and developing plant-based microbial fuel cell technology.

The lamp offers free and environmentally-friendly energy. The energy source cannot produce a constant power output—a restriction the designer views as poetic. The amount of energy it produces depends on how well you take care of the plant. Since the lamp is alive, it is intended to create more of an emotional connection than an artificial light switch.

A healthy plant can produce up to 0.1 mW, which is enough to function as a night lamp and be able to charge itself for the next night. Although the power output is currently low, the technology is still in development and researchers see potential in this renewable energy source.

Living Light will be developed over the coming year to be accessible in your living room. The design is being improved and the best production techniques are being researched. There is a planned initial production of 50 pieces, which can be pre-ordered on the Living Light website.

Living Light

Product designer Ermi van Oers has created a lamp that harvests energy from the electrons released through the photosynthetic process of a plant. Living Light merges nature and technology, changing light from something artificial to something personal by making plants part of our energy system.

+biotech
+Design
+home
+lamp
+technology

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