St Anne’s Fellow in Materials Science, Prof. Saiful Islam, reclaims Guinness World Record — and set to deliver this year’s Biennial Hirsch Lecture

Professor Saiful Islam joins the academic staff of St Anne’s this month as Fellow in Materials Science; he holds this post alongside the University’s Statutory Chair of Materials Modelling.

In November 2021, Saiful joined forces with the Royal Society of Chemistry to claim back the Guinness World Record for the largest fruit powered battery.

Saiful originally claimed the world record in 2016 during his Royal Institution Christmas Lectures, but it was broken in 2020 by a group in Denmark with their 1,521 volts.  Last year, however, Saiful and a team at the Royal Society of Chemistry used nearly 3,000 lemons to achieve 2,307.8 volts, and reclaim the world record.

You can watch a behind-the-scenes film of how the battery was prepared and the moment the official title from the World Guinness Records was granted – and the use of the power generated by the lemons’ voltage to enable some pyrotechnics to start a Go-Kart race.

Congratulations to Saiful and the Royal Society of Chemistry!

We are also pleased to share the news that Saiful will be delivering the Biennial Hirsch Lecture 2022, which will offer many in our community a first opportunity to meet him.

The title is:

‘From Batteries to Solar Cells: Exploring Energy Materials on the Atomic Scale’ by Professor Saiful Islam FRSC FIMMM

4.30pm Friday January 14th (online)

For Panopto link, email:

The subject matter of the lecture will be: Breakthroughs in clean energy technologies require advances in new materials and underpinning science.  A greater fundamental understanding of energy materials depends upon characterisation of their structural, transport and nano-scale behaviour.  This talk highlights the use of advanced modelling methods in synergy with experimental techniques to gain atomic-scale insights into novel materials for lithium-ion batteries and perovskite solar cells.