How are mitochondria analogous to hydraulic dams?  

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If a eukaryotic cell was being compared to a city, the mitochondria of the eukaryotic cell would be analogous to a hydraulic dam because both the mitochondria and hydraulic dam produce energy.  

A mitochondrion is an organelle within a eukaryotic cell. Cellular respiration occurs within the mitochondria. Cellular respiration is the process by which oxygen gas and the sugar glucose are converted into water, carbon dioxide gas, and an energy source known as adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Cells use ATP as an energy source.

Mitochondria have an inner and an outer membrane. There are three phases of cellular respiration. Each stage of cellular respiration utilizes a different part of the mitochondria.

The electron transport chain is the third and last phase of cellular respiration. The electron transport chain is located in the inner mitochondrial membrane.  At the end of the electron transport chain, protons travel down their concentration gradient through an enzyme called ATP synthase. The protons cause the ATP synthase to spin. As it spins, the ATP synthase phosphorylates ADP into ATP. In this way, ATP is synthesized for the cell.

Similarly, water that is stored behind a dam is used to spin a turbine. The turbine is connected to a generator that is used to create energy.  

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