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September 23, 2014

Open Thread – Eel-Powered Christmas!

This was taken at a Christmas display in the ‘Journey To South America’ gallery at the Living Planet Aquarium in Sandy, Utah. The blinking is caused by using the energy generated by an electric eel in a nearby tank. “We took the voltage produced by the eel via stainless steel electrodes and used it to power a sequencer,” said Terry Smith, Project Manager at Cache Valley Electric. “The sequencer takes the voltage the eel produces and operates circuitry that flashes the lights, fast or slow, based on the level of voltage he puts out, ” said Smith. Each time the eel moves, the lights on the 5ft tall tree flash intermittently using 4 strands of holiday lights.

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8 Responses to “Open Thread – Eel-Powered Christmas!”
  1. mlaiuppa says:

    While that’s pretty cool, I can’t help thinking that tank is way too small for the size of that eel. I wonder if that is stressing him, resulting in more “voltage”.

  2. Pinwheel says:

    Too creepy but a great holiday gig, if you’re an electric eel or soon salmon?? Happy, happy to all. n

  3. Zyxomma says:

    Have an electrifying holiday.

  4. GoI3ig says:

    Had they only festooned the tree with fire flies as well, the electric show would be complete.

  5. slipstream says:

    Okay . . . when I wrote my annual letter to Santa Claus, I asked for an electric train.

    Is it too late to change that? I want an electric eel !!!!!!

  6. Alaska Pi says:

    I had no idea what an electric eel is
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_eel
    nor that it truly produces electricity.
    Wow. Cool.

    Rocky – the tank looks to be at least the 200 gal minimum this critter requires, maybe more.

  7. That tank is too damned small…!!

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