The skin of an electric eel formed the basis of a "living" energy generator for the cyborgs of the future

The most advanced batteries are of little use if toxic substances are used in their design. To transform into cyborgs, humans will have to create energy sources that are friendly to our bodies. And scientists are already successfully drawing inspiration for this from the "living power plant" - the electric eel.

In the body of the eel there are long strings of "electrocells", which communicate with each other in such a way that, upon a signal from the nervous system, they start pumping sodium ions in one direction, and potassium ions in the other. This movement creates an electric current, with a total voltage of up to 600 V. In fact, everything is much more complicated, but American scientists deliberately simplified and then copied this system.

On a dielectric flexible plastic substrate, cells with fresh and salt water were placed in a checkerboard pattern, which were separated by ion-selective membranes. In a quiescent state, the cells did not come into contact with each other, but when the substrate was bent, they came into contact and the ions began to pass through the membrane, generating a current. A technology similar to reverse electrodialysis - by controlling the salinity of the water, the researchers generated an electric current.

The experimental setup produced a voltage of 100 V, which, taking into account the cost of its maintenance, does not yet allow us to speak of an acceptable level of efficiency. But the authors of the development are still satisfied - a prototype of an alternative energy generator has been created. And it is already easy to imagine an implant that will allow a person to send electrical beams from the fingers, simply by tensing the muscles and bending the arm. Or at least its low-power version for recharging other devices implanted in the body.