Fans of James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’ will be partial to this one. Fundamentally, a group of scientists have now introduced they’d like to give the world glowing plants! (Yes, you read that right). The proposed tech could, one day, give us bioluminescent trees as an alternative to streetlights. The scientists’ eventual objective is to produce vegetation so light that you might study by them in otherwise entire darkness.
The thought is to make use of a kind of genetic engineering (in particular: Synthetic Biology, where scientists create the required genes instead of simply splicing them in) in order to create a strain of plant that will glow, visibly, during the dark.
Nonetheless, for all of the considerable talk about replacing streetlamps, obtaining a potted plant to improve whatsoever, is task one.
Evidently, we have seen ‘glowing’ insects and crops before, in reality, glowing zebra fish are a man-made creation which are available in several pet stores. In those periods, a glowing jellyfish protein is spliced into the animal’s DNA, with the effect of making the creature glow, but simply when uncovered to ultraviolet light.
Why we would like it:
Man, glowing trees.
When can we expect it?
As I thought, its been completed already. A couple of years ago, a new team of scientists made a glowing tobacco plant by infusing it with genes from the type of light-emitting bacterium that lives inside the ocean. The trouble was, that the light emitted from the plant was not very bright. Actually, it is barely noticeable.
On the other hand, it’s not all doom and dimness (groan!). This is the sort of tale that has for sale magazines and garners internet hits, so expect it to collect plenty of coverage. Where there is coverage, there may be money and where there may be cash, there is usually speedy development. To this point, the group responsible for dreaming up this idea has garnered a lot more than $250,000 on US blog ‘Kickstarter.com’, so things are definitely moving ahead.
The possibility for glowing flower displays, bouquets of dazzling flowers, light-emitting roses for dining establishments and so on will ensure that many people are donating to this idea, with more seeking to invest in the eventual products themselves.
…And that’s before we even get to the green implications of an energy-efficient light resource. The sci fi critic in me can’t help, but imagine this like a bold first step right into a biotechnological future, where the whole lot, including your computer, is self-sustaining. After all, what is the Human brain if not the ultimate natural supercomputer?
Nevertheless, I do not know about the ‘Treetlamps’ (I really trust they don’t get called that), but we can expect the basic technology to emerge fairly soon, I think. This modern method certainly has the possibility to realize its aims, however it’s difficult to suggest precisely when (or if) that may be. For now, I would leave it a decade, at least.
Cool Factor: 4/5
The environmental purposes alone are genuinely staggering. In addition, the sights we could be treated to would be basically incredible. The list of applications for technology like this is as long as your arm and the material is both remarkable and worth discussing at parties. Bring over the glowing plants, I say!