Good news everyone! We have a Robo-Leaf!! Julian Melchiorri has created the very first man made leaf. This leaf functions exactly like a leaf grown on a tree. It takes in carbon dioxide, light, and water and releases oxygen. The point behind it of course is to help with the terraforming of other planets and space exploration.
I’ve always said that there if you want to become the most important human that ever existed figure out how to get us off this rock. In a few billion years the sun will wipe out everything we have. Sure finding the cure for cancer or that energy equals mass times the speed of light squared are or would be amazing discoveries. What good does it do us however if those discoveries just become dust in the solar winds. It is the discovery of how to get and live on other planets that will solidify the importance of all our other discoveries.
Julian’s leaf consists of chloroplasts — the part of a plant cell where photosynthesis happens — suspended in body made of silk protein.
The leaf has many applications and wouldn’t just be for space travel. It could help keep the air smelling clean and fresh in homes on earth. In fact the space travel is kind of a secondary thing for Melchiorri. The material could be used in lampshades, building siding and all sorts of other areas that are just laying around being useless.
It doens’t take a genius however to see a more extreme use for the technology. If you could coat the inside of a room or a ship with this then you’d have a life support system that mimics that of nature. You’d be able to create a place humans can survive comfortably without the requirements of highly technical filtration systems.
It seems like every day the new frontier of science is pushing us closer and closer to space exploration on a civilian level. That alone sets my geeky heart a flutter.