How to take part

The global battery experiment offers a choice of two investigations, so you can choose the one that best suits you. They have different levels of complexity, and require different equipment, but both offer the opportunity to make your own coin battery. In the process, you’ll learn more about batteries and how they work, as well as getting the chance to practise scientific enquiry skills.

Once you’ve chosen your investigation, you can download the instructions and supporting resources – and get started!

Choose your investigation

A female teacher constructs a simple coin battery using copper two pence pieces, aluminium foil and an LED

Investigation 1: build a battery

Target age range: 9–14

Make your own coin battery and use it to light an LED. How many cells does it take?

  • Uses only everyday materials
  • Can be done anywhere
  • Share your results and see how they compare with others around the world

Choose investigation 1

A female scientist applies a voltmeter to a coin battery on a work bench, to test how different electrolytes perform

Investigation 2: compare coin batteries made from different materials

Target age range: 11–14

Explore battery materials further. Which battery performs best?

  • Simple to set up and do, involves using a voltmeter and testing different electrolytes
  • Should be done in a science laboratory
  • Generate and compare data with your class and globally

Choose investigation 2