13-Year-Old Makes Solar Breakthrough Based on the Fibonacci Sequence!

solar power, solar energy, Fibonacci sequence,kids and trees,benefits of trees, solar design

When Aidan noticed the tree branches seemed to have a spiral pattern, he wondered if it was related to how trees collect sunlight. After reading and researching, Aidan found a mathematical similarity in the Fibinacci pattern. This is where two numbers in a series are aded together and the sum becomes the next number in the sequence such as 1+1=2, 2+1=3, 3+2=5, and so on. This sequence has already been noted in other parts of nature such as nautilus shells, sunflower seeds, and falcon flight patterns.

Aidan measured the angles at which branches spread out from trees using a home-made tool made of a plastic tube and two protractors. He then built a test model of an oak tree’s Fibinacci pattern using tiny solar panels instead of leaves. He set it outside next to flat solar panel and collected data for three months — and the results were incredible.

The solar tree made 20% more electricity and collected 2 and a half more hours of sunlight than the flat panel. Even more exciting, when tested in December, the darkest, shortest days of the year, the tree panel performed even better, producing 50% more electricity than the flat panel and collecting 50% more sunlight.

Aidan’s findings are best put in the worlds of the 13 year old himself: “The tree design takes up less room than flat-panel arrays and works in spots that don’t have a full southern view. It collects more sunlight in winter. Shade and bad weather like snow don’t hurt it because the panels are not flat. It even looks nicer because it looks like a tree. A design like this may work better in urban areas where space and direct sunlight can be hard to find.”

+ The Secret of the Fibonacci Sequence in Trees

Via Inhabitat

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6 Responses to “13-Year-Old Makes Solar Breakthrough Based on the Fibonacci Sequence!”

  1. jewelziq says:

    So fantastic. This just proves the importance of learning through inquiry as opposed to the standard curricular-driven, post-industrial revolution model of education we are fighting to get rid of. So inspiring to see the future leaders of the world do such amazing things at such an early age.

  2. mrswalshmn says:

    AMAIZING!!! This WILL change the world… So many people dont use solar power cause its hard to use in tight spaces like citys but this will make it possible… Thank you…

  3. AnnaWalls says:

    Efficiency is one thing that kept us from using solar power here in Alaska where the winter days are so short. I’ll have to tell my son about this. Thanks

  4. SolarTreeMe says:

    The only problem I see from the pictures is that his flat install has only 10 panels while his tree install has 18. Maybe I’m wrong but that alone would allow for more power but with 80% more panels being used it should be more than 20-50% shouldn’t it?

  5. ljp says:

    SolarTreeMe I’m guessing there are another 10 panels on the other side of the roof.

  6. Arkansas119 says:

    awesome! the world needs more innovative thinking lilke this. less energy spent on nonsense and more on the things that really matter, ecology, healthful living, quality of life. well done aidan!

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