Looking at carp-power
It may be the fish that Australia wants to control for environmental reasons, but monitoring the numbers may also save lives.
That’s because an Indian study has found the scales of a carp could produce enough energy to power a pacemaker.
‘‘When fish scales are bent mechanically, a small electrical charge is created,’’ National Carp Control Plan co-ordinator Matt Barwick said.
Closer to home, Mr Barwick said Curtin University was taking the research further.
‘‘Curtin University are looking at all options including scales to see what we can do with them.
It’s a unique idea that we could make energy.
‘‘Through our carp control we identified what they have a lot of — which is scales — and what can be done in Australia so we don’t leave any stone unturned?
‘‘It’s important we keep our eyes open for all options.’’
Mr Barwick said the research would not be just about what the dead carp might produce but also whether there was any interest.
‘‘The study will be around can it be done as well as finding out from industry what the market for these products (pacemakers and small lights) are and the path to implementation.’’
Despite Mr Barwick saying it was hard to tell how much power the fish scales could produce, he said it wasn’t going to revolutionise the power grid.
‘‘It’s really hard to say (what else they could power) but it’s safe to say we are never going to see fish scales powering our major capital cities.’’ ■ For more information on this component or the whole carp control program, visit: www.carp.gov.au