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Solar-Powered Animal, Oriental Hornet, Discovered By Tel-Aviv Scientists

We have all read hot news written by popular journalist. The news about Solar-Powered Animal, Oriental Hornet, Discovered By Tel-Aviv Scientists was a long time a coming. But the news doesn’t stop here. The author shows two wonderful talents. Read the the whole sections to see what I mean.

Apparently even insects are jumping on the solar power bandwagon. A recent breakthrough discovery conducted at Tel-Aviv University has found that the Oriental hornet can turn light into electricity.

The study, reported on in the journal Naturwissenschaften, began when scientists observed that unlike other wasps, the Oriental hornet is most active in the middle of the day. Further investigation revealed that UVB radiation affects the hornet’s activity level.

It turns out that an Oriental hornet’s shell can trap sunlight, while the pigment xanthopterin converts it to energy. This explains why the hornet is most active mid-day.

Now, this bug isn’t exactly the most energy efficient form of solar power. According to National Geographic, the hornet’s cells are about .3% efficient at generating electricity. The majority of his energy comes from food. Still, the discovery is fascinating, as study leader Marian Plotkin explains, “We’ve seen solar harvesting in plants and bacteria, but never before in animals.”


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Posted by on Dec 30 2010. Filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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