The fastest creature on the planet
You probably thought that I would now tell you about a cheetah or some kind of fish that can swim fast. And, no, you will say now that it is a falcon-type bird. Oh, it will accelerate, oh! And what do you think, what speed will we condemn here? For example, a cheetah can run for a short time at a speed of 120 km / h, well, maybe this creature can accelerate to 150 or even 200 km / h.
That is not guessed. We will now talk about a creature that can accelerate to 724 km / h. Shocked?
I was just as shocked, but the fact remains. Here it is…
Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology discovered the fastest being in the world. It turned out to be a single-celled worm-like creature Spirostomum ambiguum, which lives in fresh water and develops speed up to 724 km / h.
Vertebrates that can develop high speed depend on proteins such as actin and myosin. The latter is one of the main components of muscle fibers, it makes up from 40 to 60 percent of the total amount of muscle proteins.However, Spirostomum ambiguum, a worm-like creature reaching only four millimeters in length, does not need it, and at the same time they can move at a speed of up to two hundred meters per second squared, according to Saad Bhamla, assistant professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
To gain such speed, S. ambiguum reduces the length of its body by 60 percent, and then fires, like a spring. This movement is so fast, that it is almost imperceptible to the human eye.
This week, a university research group received a grant from the US National Science Foundation to study these creatures. Saad Bhamla told what scientists have to do:
“From an engineering point of view, it is interesting for us to observe how nature overcomes incredible limitations. We always think about how to implement those things that we see in nature. If we understand the principle of operation of these organisms, we may create small high-speed robots that cost a small amount of energy. We are going to record everything that this creature does and model its actions on the computer.Starting to study biology, I thought that the cells are just bags of fluid that make up the tissue, but Spirostomum is different from all the cells that we know. ”
What exactly makes a creature move so quickly is a mystery. In the next four years, scientists plan to begin a major study, which will explore the Spirostomum ambiguum in more detail.