Scientists have recently discovered that electrical fields can also be used to repel sharks. There are a few consumer shark deterrent devices on the market today. These devices are mainly used by people who are likely to encounter sharks in the open water, such as surfers and SCUBA divers. While the chances of a shark attack are extremely low, certain underwater practices, such as spear fishing, warrant additional protection from sharks. One shark deterrent on the market is the Shark Shield™. The Shark Shield™ consists of a battery pack that is strapped to the diver’s leg. An antenna, which contains two electrodes, trails behind the diver while swimming. The antenna emits an electrical charge that creates an electric field around the diver. This electric charge does not harm the diver, but causes extreme discomfort to sharks. The device repels sharks at an average distance of three-four meters from the diver.
In July of 2005, the South African government, along with the manufacturer of the Shark Shield™ started looking at ways to use electric shark deterrents to keep sharks away from beaches that are frequented by swimmers. The South African government wants to repel the sharks, but not other native species such as dolphins and whales.
During the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, electrical barriers were also used in Sydney Harbor to protect swimmers in the triathlon.
For more information, please see the Links page for a link to SeaChange™ Technology.
Series of images showing an Oceanic shark being repelled by the Shark Shield. Image used with permission from Sea Change Technology. http://www.sharkshield.com
|STRUCTURE OF THE AMPULLAE|
|THE FUNCTION OF THE GEL IN THE AMPULLAE|
|THE COMPASS SENSE|
|NEURO-ECOLOGY AND PERIPHERAL MORPHOLOGY|
|ELECTRICAL SHARK DETERRENTS|