Molecular machine

A car has a generator that runs off the car’s engine and turns the mechanical energy of rotation into electrical energy so it can charge the battery (chemical energy).

Image result for generator charges battery

Every living cells stores energy chemically in a high-energy molecule called ATP. ATP is made using electrical energy. The electrical energy moves protons across a membrane, and as they pass, they turn a paddle wheel that makes the ATP. The paddle wheel is a single molecule, a protein called FTP-ase.

Every protein is just a string of amino acids in a particular order (specified by DNA) that has a propensity to fold spontaneously into a shape all its own. This one has been around for billions of years because it is so useful. It is a self-assembling machine, made of atoms.

ATP-ase has a conversion efficiency of 38%, comparable to state-of-the-art experimental automobile engines today.

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