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Topic: is the movie matrix right concerning getting energy from humans? (Read 212 times) previous topic - next topic


so i connect the negative of a led to arduinos ground and the positive to a piece of tin foil

if i touch the tin foil with my hand  and also the floor with my bare foot the led lights and a multimeter points to around 18 volts of alternate current being generated

does this make any sense?

18 volts from a human


Since you are using a diode, try also measuring DC voltage. I like your tie in to the Matrix movies tho.

My guess is that the aluminum foil is acting as half of a capacitor, and your body is serving as a conductor. The other half of the cap could be fluorescent lights, a motor, or really anything. Try to check out the frequency of the AC. I'll bet it's the same as the power grid.

Or you could have walked across a rug, then discharge to the floor and foil. Try discharging by grabbing a metal water pipe just before joining the circuit.
What, I need to say something else too?


im figuring out whats going on

i was just being an antenna for the energy on the floor

if i put a tin foil extended on the floor and connect it to ground theres a potential of like 25 volts of alternate with several waves of 26.2, 50, and 52.6 hz but very low miliamperes, just enough to lit some leds

apparently just by putting a plaque of metal at 0 m and another at -100 m you get a potential


Usually, it is easier to put the second "plaque" at +100 m.

Although in Death Valley, California you could put it at -100 m.


You are not measuring power generated by a human, but power received using a human as a conveniently bulky antenna for the electric field radiated from your mains electricity wiring!  :smiley-roll:

And if you were outside, you might be picking up the static field from the atmosphere (the same one that produces lightning)!  :smiley-lol:


You can certainly get energy from humans. The usual method is to have them push, pull or lift something.

Very, very large structures have been built that way!


When you touch the microphone input to an audio amplifier, you get hum.  You aren't generating any energy, you're just an an antenna.
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If there's enough current to light an LED, this is more likely to be high frequency breakthrough from a switchmode supply that is not mains earthed - some laptop supplies are like this.  I'd be rather worried
by current levels that can light an LED myself.
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You can certainly get energy from humans. The usual method is to have them push, pull or lift something.
That's exactly what I was thinking...  For electricity I was thinking a generator attached to a stationary bicycle.   Of course, you're converting calories from food into electric energy.

Of course a regular bicycle is human powered or a pedal-powered pottery wheel or a lot of hand tools.

From what I found on the Internet 100W for an hour would be typical but you can get more in short bursts or more if you are an athlete.

Here is one article I found, but I think they make a mistake of assuming 100% efficiency.   I think you get more energy out of the food by burning it.

...I didn't see the movie so I have no idea how much energy they were getting but remember it's science fiction.


I didn't see the movie
The Matrix is a great movie, the entire series. Don't miss it!  The part that the OP refers to is a largely irrelevant opening scene.


so here my experiments with this so far it has me puzzled:

so i put a tinfoil in the floor  connect it to a diode and that diode i connect it to the arduinos ground

the multimeter measures 40 volts

 a led is lit both ways

but if i dont put a diode in the midle there are 0 measured volts

also the floor im using is made of wood

the oscilloscope i use detect 3 main waves of 25.6, 50 and 52.6 hz, some google of the 25.6 frequency lead me to shumans earth frequency


String a wire under a high tension power line and collect useful power!



The diode is rectifying the AC your body is collecting.

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