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Apples and Oranges
February 13, 2010 6:22 PM   Subscribe

How many oranges does it take to charge an Apple? (A SLYT post, via)
posted by zarq (46 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
The video is apparently part of a campaign to raise awareness about jaffa oranges. So... you know... Orange Blue. :)
posted by zarq at 6:23 PM on February 13, 2010


That was very Dexter.
posted by dirigibleman at 6:25 PM on February 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


As a chemistry instructor, I can't let this slip by without noting that the oranges don't actually produce any electricity. It's the electron transfer between the two metals - in this case copper and zinc - that provides the charge. The orange slices merely provide the I'll stop now
posted by darkstar at 6:33 PM on February 13, 2010 [25 favorites]


Yeah, you'd get better results with lemons or limes. In general the more sour the citrus the better the power source.
posted by jedicus at 6:35 PM on February 13, 2010


The orange slices merely provide the

Yeah, I came in here to ask: Couldn't you just stick a bunch of nails into a couple of unsliced oranges thereby achieving the same effect?
posted by Throw away your common sense and get an afro! at 6:38 PM on February 13, 2010


It looks like each battery is 12 oranges. Assuming the iPhone has a USB-like charging interface, it needs ~5V. If each orange provides a ~.8V potential, that would work. They can get almost 200 batteries of 12 oranges out of 2380 oranges, so I guess the rest is just MOAR POWA (which is to say current).

the oranges don't actually produce any electricity. It's the electron transfer between the two metals - in this case copper and zinc - that provides the charge

Right, which means cutting the oranges was kind of pointless. It just gets juice everywhere. If you need bigger currents, use probes with larger surface areas.
posted by DU at 6:38 PM on February 13, 2010


SCIENCE!

The video is apparently part of a campaign to raise awareness about jaffa oranges.

In my search for more info on the Jaffa oranges, Google's suggestion was "jaffa oranges boycott," leading me to this - Israeli oranges imported as products of China, to bypass an Iranian ban on imports from its "arch foe" Israel (report dated April 24, 2009). Apparently by bypassing the ban, Israeli orange agents were "smear[ing] the government." Here is some more history on the Jaffa oranges, including how this orange "is a fruit to which many symbolically link the effects and aftermath of the 1948 Israeli-Arab War and Palestinian national identity issues."
posted by filthy light thief at 6:39 PM on February 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


something something comparing
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:41 PM on February 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I thought you can't ampere Apples and oranges.
posted by hal9k at 6:42 PM on February 13, 2010 [24 favorites]


I just went to Wikipedia:
..a very sweet, almost seedless orange...

[Jaffa oranges] are characterized by their oval shape, sweet flavor, and strong aroma. The peel is light orange in color, and is normally very easy to remove from the fruit.
Sounds like a politicized version of the clementine. Only with more seeds. Pass.
posted by DU at 6:43 PM on February 13, 2010


Apparently by bypassing the ban, Israeli orange agents were "smear[ing] the government." Here is some more history on the Jaffa oranges, including how this orange "is a fruit to which many symbolically link the effects and aftermath of the 1948 Israeli-Arab War and Palestinian national identity issues."

Oh dear lord.
posted by zarq at 6:44 PM on February 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: like a politicized version of the clementine
posted by DU at 6:50 PM on February 13, 2010


Sounds like a politicized version of the clementine. Only with more seeds. Pass.

They have at most 2 or 3 seeds, I think. Been a very long time since I had one.
posted by zarq at 6:54 PM on February 13, 2010


hal9k wins!
posted by sfts2 at 7:06 PM on February 13, 2010


AGH STOP WASTING FOOD! starving children grumble grumble

But that is pretty awesome.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 7:32 PM on February 13, 2010


Sounds like a politicized version of the clementine. Only with more seeds. Pass.
...
MetaFilter: like a politicized version of the clementine

Metafilter: You can't tagline your own comment.
posted by delmoi at 7:46 PM on February 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


I thought you can't ampere Apples and oranges.

I love you.
posted by Splunge at 8:01 PM on February 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


AGH STOP WASTING FOOD! starving children grumble grumble

That's not food, though. Apparently those are blood oranges.

Like blood diamonds. Only fruity.
posted by graventy at 8:14 PM on February 13, 2010 [5 favorites]


Shocking!
Metafilter: keeping current on things.
posted by drhydro at 8:27 PM on February 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Seriously, stop wasting food.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:30 PM on February 13, 2010


If you used the right metals you could still eat the oranges and they'd be even better for you because they'd be fortified with essential minerals!
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 8:59 PM on February 13, 2010


The orange slices merely provide the I'll stop now

Hello, I am actually lazy and or stupid; next time please feel encouraged to continue right where it was getting good!
posted by cavalier at 9:13 PM on February 13, 2010


The orange slices merely provide the pretext for the metals to swap electrons. See, copper and zinc aren't actually interested in each other—each of them is much more into citrus than other metals. But if you put them in an orange-rich environment, they'll engage in electrical congress, in order to seem interesting, and attract the attention of the orange.
posted by kenko at 9:28 PM on February 13, 2010 [12 favorites]


Yeah, there was no reason to actually slice the oranges.
posted by delmoi at 9:41 PM on February 13, 2010


Yeah, there was no reason to actually slice the oranges.

Other than Gratuitous-Attractive-Woman-With-Knife filler which provided 80% of the run-time.
posted by maxwelton at 9:45 PM on February 13, 2010


Woman slicing oranges? Yeah, we got that B-roll.
posted by Rhomboid at 9:51 PM on February 13, 2010 [7 favorites]


How funny. Thanks !
posted by diwolf at 10:50 PM on February 13, 2010


Didn't they slice the oranges to make them into separate batteries? If you just stuck all the nails into one orange, I don't think you'd get the same kind of voltage, would you?
posted by Malor at 12:08 AM on February 14, 2010


Apparently those are blood oranges.

You probably already know this, but blood oranges are a real thing and they're delicious.
posted by empath at 12:14 AM on February 14, 2010


Feeling inspired, I wanted to find out how many oranges it would take to power my electric car. I soon discovered it was far more efficient to use kittens instead. It works out to roughly 7400 kittens/mile. Add another 600/mile if you're running the air conditioner. But there is a downside: it's REALLY noisy.
posted by Davenhill at 12:41 AM on February 14, 2010


Seriously, stop wasting food.

I know, this is revolting.

I'll be here all week.
posted by Evilspork at 12:44 AM on February 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


[...] use probes with larger surface areas


That's what she said.

I'll just show myself out...
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 3:39 AM on February 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Don't slice directly onto a granite surface! It's painful to see knives used like this! GAH!
posted by Thoth at 4:31 AM on February 14, 2010


Yeah, I came in here to ask: Couldn't you just stick a bunch of nails into a couple of unsliced oranges thereby achieving the same effect?

No. I tried this with a potato once. You need to have each "cell" electrically isolated for this to work.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:00 AM on February 14, 2010


You probably already know this, but blood oranges are a real thing and they're delicious.

That's what makes it a good pun. Sort of.
posted by graventy at 6:06 AM on February 14, 2010


wow, what a wasting of food..
posted by Ly at 6:29 AM on February 14, 2010


Hmmm...
posted by pracowity at 6:42 AM on February 14, 2010


For those of you concerned about the wasting of food, check out this these batteries that actually use waste and by that I mean cow dung.
posted by skullbee at 7:13 AM on February 14, 2010


The orange slices merely provide the pretext for the metals to swap electrons. See, copper and zinc aren't actually interested in each other—each of them is much more into citrus than other metals. But if you put them in an orange-rich environment, they'll engage in electrical congress, in order to seem interesting, and attract the attention of the orange.

When I finally get around to founding my Unorthodox Science University, you are awarded a full professorship.
posted by Xezlec at 8:09 AM on February 14, 2010


The orange slices merely provide the pretext for the metals to swap electrons. See, copper and zinc aren't actually interested in each other—each of them is much more into citrus than other metals. But if you put them in an orange-rich environment, they'll engage in electrical congress, in order to seem interesting, and attract the attention of the orange.

So... basically electricity works like performance bisexuality in a club?

God, did you really build the universe out of issues of FHM and Maxim?

I'm just going to curl up in the corner here and cry for a bit. Don't mind me.
posted by yeloson at 9:15 AM on February 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yeah, don't get me started on Molecular Orbital Theory and what happens when you have a degenerate pair of HOMOs...
posted by darkstar at 9:35 AM on February 14, 2010


Dammit citrus is so expensive in the US.
posted by anniecat at 9:54 AM on February 14, 2010


Eh, if it weren't eating oranges, it'd be eating coal.

Granted, these oranges came from the Middle East, while coal can be had from the United States.
posted by mccarty.tim at 10:01 AM on February 14, 2010


Hmm, I'm going to go spend this Valentine's Day afternoon with another degenerate homo and I expect there to be plenty of electricity...
posted by greekphilosophy at 10:35 AM on February 14, 2010


You'd need that many oranges because, while there is a nominal power of ~.9 V if they do copper-zinc cells this way, when you actually subject the cell to a load there is internal resistance. I'm guessing that the internal resistance of an orange severely limits the current it can kick out. It appears from the final shot that they made six batteries of many, many slices of orange wired in parallel. Each parallel arrangement will give you the 0.9V, but because there are so many sources in it you can actually generate a decent current. Then they put the six of them in series to provide the necessary ~5V for the iPod.

You could increase the surface area per probe to get more current too, but equivalently you could slice the oranges and put in more probes. They do the same thing, so if you already have the small probes lying around it seems easier to slice the oranges than find new probes.
posted by Schismatic at 11:14 AM on February 14, 2010


So that was cool.
posted by stoneweaver at 3:39 PM on February 14, 2010


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