Does Bamboo Conduct Electricity?
Less than a year after he developed the first practical light bulb (1880), Thomas Edison designed a new version that had all the essential features of a modern light bulb; an incandescent filament in an evacuated glass bulb with a screw base. The most critical factor was finding the right material for the filament, the part inside the light bulb that glows when an electric currant is passed through it. Edison tested more than 1,600 materials, including coconut fiber, fishing line, even hairs from a worker's beard. Finally, Edison ended up using bamboo fiber for the filament. Edison and his team discovered that carbonized bamboo had the capacity to conduct electrical currant, and that it could last more than 1200 hours, more than any other material at the time. Researchers have built upon his work and now have discovered that bamboo charcoal is a natural “nano tube” that can conduct electricity as a very thin film disbursed on the surface of a glass or silicon substrate.