ELECTRIC EEL
Electrophorus Electricus

You will be shocked to hear that the electric eel is actually not an eel at all. The electric eel (Electrophorus electricus) is an electric fish. Despite the name, it is not an eel, but rather a knifefish. Electric eels habitat are the  fresh waters of the Amazon and Orinoco River in South America. They live in swamps, creeks, small rivers, and coastal plains where they swim on muddy bottoms in calm or stagnant waters where they can creep onto their pray.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

The Electric eel has muscle like cells called electrocytes, these cells are in the so called Sach’s organ which are responsible for creating the shocking ability to create two types of charges within the electric eel, high and low voltage. The electrocytes are very tiny and can each only produce 0.15 V, all together the Sach’s organ can generate up to 10 V overall in amplitude at around 25 Hz in frequency. This is not enough to kill a human and most fish, but it can definitely be enough to stun its prey and deter any predators.

WHY SYNTHESIZE THIS?

Researchers see the possibility to create self charging implants. This would very usefull for the new technologies that are trying to merge the h

FUN FACTS:

  • Electrophorus electricus actually needs to return to the surface about every 10 min for oxygen,  it actually gets 80 percent of its oxygen this way.

 

Image courtesy Dorling Kindersley