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Home Industry News New eel-inspired biocompatible power cells developed

New eel-inspired biocompatible power cells developed

15th December 2017

Researchers have created a new biocompatible power cell inspired by the capabilities of the electric eel.

A team from the University of Michigan have developed the first potentially biocompatible artificial electric organs that generate more than 100 volts of power, from a composition of hydrogen and salt.

The technology operates using a similar principle of polarised cells that generate an electric current, with the current prototype devices able to produce enough power to support a small medical device like a pacemaker.

Efforts are now focusing on improving the efficiency of the device, allowing them to be used as body-friendly power sources for implanted health monitors and medication dispensers, augmented-reality contact lenses and other applications in future.

Corresponding study author Michael Mayer, a professor of biophysics at the Adolphe Merkle Institute of the University of Fribourg in Switzerland, said: "The electric organs in eels are incredibly sophisticated; they're far better at generating power than we are. But the important thing for us was to replicate the basics of what's happening."

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