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How Many AA Batteries Would to Take to Power a Human?

Engineering Humor - RF CafeThese tech-centric jokes, song parodies, anecdotes and assorted humor have been collected from friends and websites across the Internet. This humor is light-hearted and sometimes slightly offensive to the easily-offended, so you are forewarned. It is all workplace-safe.

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So, how many AA batteries would it take to power a standard adult human for one day?

A Manganese/Alkaline AA cell it rated at about 2.4 amp-hours. If we assume 1.5 volts average this gives approximately 3.6 watt-hours (slightly optimistic). Since there are 3,600 seconds in an hour this is equivalent to 12,960 Joules.

A human consumes about 2,000 calories/day. A dietician calorie is equal to 1,000 engineering calories. A calorie is equal to 4.2 Joules. Therefore this is equivalent to 2,000 * 1,000 * 4.2 = 8.4 * 106 Joules per day.

Dividing one by the other you will need about 648 AA cells to power a human for one day.

This assumes that the power from the AA cell will go through the same inefficiencies as the chemical processes in a human. (A human runs at about 20% efficiency chemical energy to mechanical energy). If we can circumvent this inefficiency we would only need 20% of this number of cells - say 130 cells.



---From: Ben Gebeau

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RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The World Wide Web (Internet) was largely an unknown entity at the time and bandwidth was a scarce commodity. Dial-up modems blazed along at 14.4 kbps while typing up your telephone line, and a nice lady's voice announced "You've Got Mail" when a new message arrived...

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