A novel way of producing an electric current by means of hot and cold water, heat from a match or alcohol lamp, is obtained from a device constructed as shown in the sketch. Take two hardwood boards, marble, or slate plates, about 8 or 10 in. long, place together, as in Fig. 1, and mark and drill about 500 holes. These two pieces should be separated about 8 in. and fastened with boards across the ends, as shown in Fig. 2.
Illustration: Details of Battery
Take soft copper wire, not smaller than No. 18 gauge, and cut in lengths to pass through the holes in the two boards, leaving sufficient end to make a tie. It will require about 70 ft. of wire to fill one-half the number of holes. Also, cut the same number of lengths from the same gauge galvanized-iron wire to fill the remaining holes. The wires are put through the holes in the boards alternately, that is: begin with copper, the next hole with iron, the next copper, the next iron, and so on, twisting the ends together as shown in Fig. 3. The connections, when complete, should be copper for the first and iron for the last wire.
When the whole apparatus is thus strung, the connections, which must be twisted, can be soldered. Connect one copper wire to the bell and the other terminal, which must be an iron wire, to the other post of the bell. The apparatus is then short-circuited, yet there is no current in the instrument until a lighted match, or, better still, the flame of an alcohol lamp is placed at one end only.
Best results are obtained by putting ice or cold water on one side and a flame on the other. The experimenter may also place the whole apparatus under sink faucets with the hot water turned on at one terminal and the cold water at the other. The greater the difference of temperature in the two terminals, the more current will be obtained.
Very interesting experiments may thus be performed, and these may lead to the solving of the great thermoelectric problem.