MIT Engineers are known to be the best innovators in the world. A group of MIT engineers are now working on a project where they are working on creating plants which would soon emit enough light to illuminate a workspace! Imagine working at night and not having to use an electric light source. How cool would it be to work under natural light of a plant! These Nanobionic plants are currently being researched upon.
These plants were created by embedding special nanoparticles in the leaves of a watercress plant. The plant was able to give out dim light for about four hours. This technology could some day be used to create indoor lighting that does not consume electricity, or trees that can replace streetlights!
“The vision is to make a plant that will function as a desk lamp — a lamp that you don’t have to plug in. The light is ultimately powered by the energy metabolism of the plant itself,” says Michael Strano, the Carbon P. Dubbs Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT.
Plant Nanobionics is still a new research area and a lot is to be done in this field. This technology can help plants develop new features by embedding various nanoparticles in them. The goal of the team working on these projects is to make use of plants to perform some features which are currently being done by electric energy sources.
Lighting accounts for about 20% of worldwide electricity consumption. Plants have many benefits above electric sources of lighting once they are able to illuminate enough. Plants, for starting, can self-repair as well as generate their own energy. To create these glowing plants, the MIT team has used luciferase which is th enzyme which gives Fireflies their glow. The team’s eventual goal is to create plants which can turn on and turn off light based on various stimuli from the environment.