MIT scientists invent glowing tree - All you need to know

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MIT scientists invent glowing tree - All you need to know
MIT scientists invent glowing tree - All you need to know

New Delhi : Technology used in right direction has capability to enlighten the future. Proving it correct are the MIT scientists who have invented a glowing tree that can replace street lights on roads and save energy.

After research for months, the scientists have found a way to induce plants to give off dim light by embedding specialised nanoparticles into their leaves.

The new technology can be used to produce dim indore lighting or to transform trees into self-powered streetlights, the researchers said.

"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," said Michael Strano, Professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US.

Reason behind emission of light

Professor Strano and his colleagues used luciferase to enable trees glow on its own. It is the same substance which helps fireflies to glow during night.

They created nanoparticles containing luciferase, as well as other, larger particles containing luciferin and coenzyme A, which combine with the luciferase to produce the desired effect.

When scientists tried the solution on plants they were enable to light up the tree for over four hours.

"Our target is to perform one treatment when the plant is a seedling or a mature plant, and have it last for the lifetime of the plant," said Professor Strano. 

"Our work very seriously opens up the doorway to streetlamps that are nothing but treated trees, and to indirect lighting around homes."

The findings from the research have been published in the journal Nano Letters.