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Nokia uses a bolt of lightning to charge Lumia 925

The possibilities presented by wireless charging are pretty exciting. But imagine if you could charge your phone simply by harnessing the natural power of lightning.

Mobile phone giant Nokia has been working with the University of Southampton to do just that, and the results are pretty astonishing.

In tests undertaken at Southampton's high voltage laboratory, the collaborators were able to use an energy simulation similar to that of a bolt of lightning to fully charge a Nokia Lumia 925.

"We were excited by this challenge presented to us by Nokia," explained lead researcher Neil Palmer. "Using an alternating current, driven by a transformer, over 200,000V was sent across a 300mm gap – giving heat and light similar to that of a lightning bolt. The signal was then stepped into a second controlling transformer, allowing us to charge the phone."

What happened next surprised even the scientists. "We were amazed to see that the Nokia circuitry somehow stabilised the noisy signal, allowing the battery to be charged in only seconds," Palmer continued. "This discovery proves that the device can be charged with a current that passes through the air, and is a huge step towards understanding a natural power like lightning and harnessing its energy."

While Nokia isn't recommending people try this at home just yet, the company believes the experiment has the potential to jump-start new ideas on how we charge our phones in the future. Watch this space.

Author
Laura Hopperton

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