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Zinc or aluminium.. Science project for 10 year old

  • 11-03-2020 3:56pm
    Registered Users Posts: 2,940 ✭✭✭ Call me Al

    My youngest is doing a science project. He saw one on YouTube where he gets to generate power from a potato and that's what he has decided to do.
    It uses copper and zinc strips. I can use cent coins for copper but where can I source small zinc strips?
    One online comment suggested substituting this zinc with aluminium? Will that work? Or elsewhere advice is to use a nail... are all regular nails zinc?
    Any advice would be much appreciated..


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 87,167 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Capt'n Midnight

    Poor study can mean a zero in honours leaving chemistry. More study gents.

    Potassium - explodes on contact with water YMMV
    Magnesium - some expensive laptops use this, with copper will light an LED
    Aluminium - may form a passive coating
    Zinc - old batteries, galvanised stuff USA cent coins
    Iron - nails and stuff
    Mercury - toxic and not cheap
    Silver - not cheap
    Gold - also not cheap

    It's the electrochemical series.

    You want metals as far apart as possible. - sort by voltage