Lemon Battery

Figure from experiment 12 from STEM 2 with Vernier and LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT


“Juice” is a slang term sometimes used for electricity. It comes from the fact that electrochemical batteries are formed when two conducting materials are immersed in an acidic solution. When the conducting materials are connected by a wire, electric current will flow. In this activity, you will study some basic principles of electrochemical batteries using the juice of a lemon as the battery solution, called the electrolyte. Small strips of conducting materials will be inserted into the lemon to act as electrodes. The acid in the lemon juice helps break down the atomic structure of the conducting materials causing individual electrons to be released. You will use a Differential Voltage probe to measure the voltage produced.


In this experiment, you will

  • Build a lemon battery.
  • Use a Voltage Probe and NXT to measure and display cell voltages.
  • Discover which materials produce a voltage.
  • Decide which materials make the "best" battery.

Sensors and Equipment

This project/activity requires each of the following Vernier sensors and equipment (unless otherwise noted):

Additional Requirements

You will also need NXT Sensor Adapter and a LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT robotics system.

Download Project/activity Preview

The student-version preview includes:

  • Step-by-step instructions for computer-based data collection
  • List of materials and equipment

The preview does not include essential teacher information, safety tips, or sample data. We strongly recommend that you purchase the book for classroom use.

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Standards Correlations

No standards correlations for this experiment.

Project/activity 12 from STEM 2 with Vernier and LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Lab Book

<em>STEM 2 with Vernier and LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT</em> book cover

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Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include a CD with word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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