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Teenager Invents Flashlight Powered by Body Heat

The invention of a flashlight powered solely by the heat of the hand holding it has earned a Canadian teenager a spot as a finalist in this year’s Google Science Fair.

Teenagers might get stereotyped as being flighty or immature or too self-absorbed, or that they’re just “kids”, but that probably couldn’t be farther from the truth, at least in this case. If you’re really paying attention to what these teens are bringing to table as the next generation of scientists and inventors, you’ll see that the next Tesla or Edison just might be sitting next to you. And Ann Makosinski is a stellar example of that.

15-year old Ann Makosinski’s Hollow Flashlight, which she submitted to the Google Science Fair 2013, can produce a bright light without any batteries or moving parts, producing electricity by taking advantage of temperature differences on the flashlight as small as 5 degrees.

“I chose to investigate the aspect of human energy when I found out that we are like walking 100 Watt light bulbs. The goal of my project became a flashlight powered solely from the heat of the human hand. I decided to use Peltier tiles. If one side of these tiles is heated, and the other is cooled, electricity is produced. For my flashlight, I would be heating one side with the palm, and cooling the other side of the tile with a heat sink.” – Ann Makosinski

Here’s Ann talking about her submission:

According to GizMag, the total cost for materials for the device was only about $25. The full submission can be found at her project page, Hollow Flashlight.

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