Solar Hydrogen/Oxygen Generator DIY - Simple "Electrolysis" Using Sunlight! (turns Water Into Fuel)




Introduction: Solar Hydrogen/Oxygen Generator DIY - Simple "Electrolysis" Using Sunlight! (turns Water Into Fuel)

About: hi there. on this instructable channel i'll be covering all types of DIY solar power projects (as well as off-grid/survival/green living projects) that are easy to make out of readily available products and ma…

in this instructable i'll show you how to make a simple device that converts/splits water into hydrogen and oxygen. it's amazing simple and works great. (be sure to watch video, as it shows lots of extra detail - including the bubbles just flying off of the pencils). video shows it being powered by solar panel, 9v battery and a ac/dc transformer.

Step 1: Watch the Instructable Video...

Step 2: Read Description...

A Simple "Electrolysis" Experiment shows how to "Split Water" into Oxygen/Hydrogen with a Solar Panel (or battery) and water. very easy to do. The graphite in the pencils conduct electricity (from solar panel or battery) and send a small amount of it into the water. The result being that the water is "split" into oxygen/hydrogen (a process known as electrolysis). This video mainly focuses on using a solar panel but also shows a 9v battery as a power source as well as a "multiple voltage" comparison (near the end of the video) using a Regulated DC Power Supply (set at multiple intervals - 3v, 4.5v, 6v, 7.5v, 9v, and 12v). watch how the volume of bubbles increases with voltage. note that this is a common grade school science experiment and is totally safe. one can imagine if this small-scale experiment was "up-scaled" and perfected it could be a good way to store solar/wind power for later use. a very "green" technology overall if the electrical source is solar or wind (and when the hydrogen is used (as fuel etc.) the only by-product is water)

Step 3: Items Needed...

1.) 2 pencils

2.) a drinking glass (the clearer the better)

3.) small piece of cardboard

4.) couple of wires (i used black/red wires with alligator clips)

5.) small solar panel or 9v battery or ac/dc transformer

Step 4: First, Sharpen the Pencils...

sharpen the pencils at both ends. then make 2 small holes in the piece of cardboard (about 1 inch apart) and push the pencils into the holes (see pics above)

Step 5: Add Water to Glass...

add water to the glass and place the (cardboard and pencil) piece on top of the glass.

Step 6: Now Connect Wires...

now just connect the wires from the end of the pencils to the power source. the bubbles will start to form immediately. one cool thing about this project is many people will already have everything they need to make it at home. no need to buy anything (with exception of the solar panel... but 9v battery works well). *make hydrogen and oxygen at home for free... and all with common household items.

Step 7: Here's a Few Extra Pics...

have fun building and using it! again, check out the video to see the bubbles just pouring off the pencils. the still pictures don't capture it nearly as well

Be the First to Share


    • Woodworking Contest

      Woodworking Contest
    • Make It Modular: Student Design Challenge

      Make It Modular: Student Design Challenge
    • Trash to Treasure Contest

      Trash to Treasure Contest



    1 year ago on Step 7

    Put the hydrogen pencil in a rubber tube and secure it inside. the bubbles should go into the tube, the tube goes into tank. thats how you capture it. how do you separate the hydrogen from air in tank? my guess is to experiment with weight. or flammability. for the burning part, you should have a small valve where air would go out at the lowest point. you test the flammability every now and then by taking a small mini glass bottle and filling it with gas from the big tank. this would work much better in a closed system with a small compressor, same thing the air drops down on the tank or You could always get a sensor.. ....or not.


    2 years ago

    Found any way to capture the hydrogen?


    4 years ago

    Thank you , it’s useful for all who needs free power supply .