Biobulb: the bacteria powered light
Although it may seem unnatural for bacteria to be emitting light within our bodies, one could not deny the innovative technology behind this bacteria powered light. Undergraduate students from the University of Wisconsin have developed a biobulb that enables bacteria to glow in the dark.
According to the article by Megan Treacy, it is within this ecosystem of the enclosed jar that the biobulb behaves as a living light source. This ecosystem consists of several different microbes which form a self-sufficient system without the need for external resources other than natural light (Treacy 2013). The system is designed to support a species of genetically modified E. Coli which has been infused with a plasmid containing genes for bioluminescence (Biobulb 2014). In the presence of natural sunlight these bacteria are able to grow, allowing them to survive for several months on end.
Moreover, in the future I believe it could be brought to the everyday household as a readily available lighting source.
In the home, it would act as a portable light source, as it has no need to be installed. The idea supports a greener environment with less CO2 emissions and reduced electrical billing costs. I believe that the biobulb has the potential to be incorporated into various furniture, light fittings, street lights or integrated into walls and partitions. It could also be used in environments where electrical power is scarce, such as areas which have encountered natural disasters, where it could then be used as an emergency lighting source.
In addition, the design team for this lighting ecosystem are working further to allow for different coloured lighting. They have been experimenting with mutation of the plasmids as a means of triggering different colour spectrums (Biobulb 2014). Nonetheless, this technology, despite having bacteria...