These Living Bricks Can Self-Heal, Absorb CO2, And Multiply
Aadhya Khatri - Jan 16, 2020
The resulting bricks are as durable as any other ones on the market, as shared by Wil Srubar, assistant professor of the University of Colorado Boulder
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Scientists have found a way to create a kind of living bricks that can turn carbon dioxide into CaCO3, the primary ingredient to make cement.
The key to this invention is Synechococcus cyanobacteria, let’s call it bacteria from now on. The experts have conducted tests and are quite confident that their invention would work well with sand and CO2, under humid conditions. Another exciting property is self-healing.
First, the scientists inoculated the bacteria into a blend of gelatin and sand. What happened next was CO2 being turned into calcium carbonate and gelatin being mineralized, binding the sand together. So the bacteria play an important part here as they help the scientists actually grow material from scratch.
The resulting bricks are as durable and hard as any other ones on the market, as shared by Wil Srubar, assistant professor of the University of Colorado Boulder. So what you will have is not a fragile sand castle but actually useful bricks than can be used in construction.
That is not all. These bricks can also reproduce, just like when you sow a seed and a tree grows out of it. According to Srubar, since bacteria grow really quickly, these bricks can split itself into two, four in no time.
This invention has the potential to change our whole concept of materials as well as the way we manufactured them.