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Thursday, May 5, 2011

The little Firefly out- performs humans as a light producer


The little Firefly out-performs humans as light producers...

By Peter Petterson

First Published at Qondio:

Only a little being, the common firefly or lightning bug can be found in both temperate and tropical regions of Planet Earth. There are 2,000 species of this insect. Their larvae also emit light and are known as glow-worms.

It can be recognised by the flashing light it uses to attract a mate, or confuse a potential predator.

Reportedly, and interestingly enough, the firefly's light is actually superior to the incadescent and fluorscent lights produced by humankind. In fact the next time you have a look at your power bill, which always seems to be increaing these days around the western world, consider just what this little insect can do. It is actually quite amazing.

1/ An incadescent lightbulb emits only 10% of its energy as light, the other 90% is wasted as discharged heat.

2/ A fluorescent lightbulb is vastly superior, emitting up to 90% of its energy as light, wasting a mere 10% as discharged heat.

However, neither of the above are in the same league and fail to match the little firefly. With very few ultraviolet or infared rays,this insect emits almost 100% of its energy as light - cold light!

The Firefly's secret actually lies in the chemical reactions of the substance luciferon, the enzyme luciferase, and oxygen. Special cells called photocytes use the luciferase to trigger this process, with oxygen as fuel.

The result of this process is called cold-light - so named because it produces virtually no heat. Light-bulb inventer, Thomas Edison must have been envious of this little insect.

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At May 16, 2011 at 9:36 AM , Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Peter,
Nature provide us with lots of things

At May 17, 2011 at 12:58 AM , Blogger Unknown said...

Some are incredible, harry!


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