A team of MIT researchers recently discovered that applying firefly enzymes to kale with gentle pressure causes the plant to glow in the dark. The plant only gives off one-thousandth of the light humans need to read by and the glow only lasts three-and-a-half hours, but there’s vast potential, says MIT professor and lead study author Michael Strano. With further development, glow-in-the-dark trees and plants could take pressure off energy infrastructure by providing free, earth-friendly lighting at night.
How to Grow a Baby Without a Human Womb
While popping out a baby by traditional methods is a feat in its own right, things get a lot more interesting if you consider this alternative to the womb. Students from Artez Product Design Arnhem have designed Par-tu-ri-ent, an external, womb-like incubation system that aims to bring a baby to term. Par-tu-ri-ent offers a communication device, a feeder, a portable bag that can be worn to simulate the baby’s kicks, and a completely transparent top so you can watch your offspring grow.
Interface Takes Design Notes From the Hardworking Honeybee
The honeycomb is a masterpiece of natural engineering. Without the benefit of the human brain or design thinking, bees create functional spaces that are practical, sustainable, and beautiful. Designers are starting to replicate nature’s innovations through biomimicry, recognizing that organic systems can solve manmade problems, as well.
Scientists at NASA have come up with the Prototype Lunar/Mars Greenhouse, which will allows astronauts to grow vegetables and fruits far from Planet Earth. Using bio-regenerative life support systems, the cylindrical and inflatable greenhouses will take in the astronauts’ expired carbon dioxide and pump out oxygen into the space cabin or human settlement. Humans will need to provide the initial supply of water, but greenhouses may eventually make use of lunar or martian water repositories.