There were invented a variety of methods meant to announce the detection of a bomb, but we would never think of bionic plants. Over the years, there were devised a lot of ways and procedures which had a certain degree of efficiency when detecting bombs. Among these methods, researchers recall spectrometry, silicon nanowires, X-rays, the help of bees or dogs, the use of chemicals, but they have never used bionic plants.
- Scientists have developed an innovative technology meant to detect bombs.
- Bionic plants were especially designed to detect explosives.
Some scientists from Massachusetts Institute of Technology had used a strategy called “plant nano bionics.” Through this approach, they managed to implement some carbon nanotubes in plants like spinach, allowing the plant to detect explosives and send data through a wireless handheld device.
This method was previously used in bomb detection devices before, implementing the ability to identify the smell of particular chemicals which are used in bomb manufacturing. The team of scientists from MIT has explained the process. They argued that these species of spinach which were transformed into bionic plants were designed to determine the nitroaromatics which are used in the manufacturing of explosives.
If these terrible chemicals are detected by the plant in the groundwater, then the leaves of the plant start emitting fluorescent light due to the carbon nanotubes implemented in its composition. The fluorescent signals can be traced with the help of an infrared camera. This camera is usually connected to a device able to send an e-mail to its user.
The leader of this research study, but also a chemical engineering professor at MIT, Michael Strano, has argued that these bionic plants are designed to accomplish a certain purpose. Their goal is to embed nanoparticles into the spinach plants to develop non-native functions.
Professor Strano is also of the opinion that the same technique could be induced in the case of pollution detection. Plants can acquire certain properties when undergoing chemical processes, determining them to have the ability to identify environmental conditions and pollution. He also claimed that this progress which science made is the proof of evolution in the relationship human-plant.
In this sense, a study called “Nitroaromatic detection and infrared communication from wild-type plants using plant nano bionics” was recently published in Nature Materials magazine. The scientists working on that paper were very knowledgeable ones, like Min Hao Wong, an MIT graduate and Juan Pablo Giraldo, a former MIT postdoctoral student.
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