Are glowing plants the solution to our power worries

Fans of James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’ will be partial to this 1. Basically, a group of scientists have now launched they’d like to give the world glowing vegetation! (Yes, you read that right). The projected tech could, someday, offer us bioluminescent plants as an alternative to streetlights. The scientists’ eventual aim is to produce vegetation so light that you might study by them in otherwise complete darkness.

The thought is to use a type of genetic engineering (specifically: Synthetic Biology, where scientists manufacture the specified genes instead of purely splicing them in) so that they can create a strain of plant that will glow, visibly, during the night.

However, for all the considerable discuss replacing streetlamps, getting a potted plant to grow whatsoever, is job one.

Noticeably, we have seen ‘glowing’ creatures and plants in the past, in fact, glowing zebra fish are a man-made invention that are available in many pet shops. In those periods, a glowing jellyfish protein is spliced into the animal’s DNA, using the effect of making the animal glow, but only when uncovered to ultraviolet light.

Why we would like it:

Dude, glowing trees.

When can we look forward to it?

As I said, its been done already. A couple of years ago, a new team of scientists made a glowing tobacco plant by infusing it among genes from the type of light-emitting bacterium that lives in the ocean. The difficulty was, that the light emitted by the plant wasn’t very bright. In reality, it was barely noticeable.

Nevertheless, it’s not all doom and dimness (groan!). This is the kind of tale that has for sale magazines and garners internet hits, so expect it to collect plenty of coverage. Where there may be coverage, there may be money and where there is money, there may be typically rapid expansion. Thus far, the group to blame for dreaming up this concept has garnered more than $250,000 on United states website ‘’, so things are categorically moving ahead.

The possibility for glowing floral displays, bouquets of dazzling flowers, light-emitting roses for dining establishments and so forth will ensure that lots of people shall be donating to this concept, with much more planning to invest in the eventual products itself.

…And that’s before we even get to the green implications of an power-efficient light resource. The sci fi author in me cannot avoid, but envisage this like a bold first step right into a biotechnological outlook, where the whole lot, including your computer, is self-sustaining. After all, what may be the Human brain if not the final physical PC?

Nevertheless, I don’t know concerning the ‘Treetlamps’ (I actually wish they don’t get called that), but we can expect the essential technology to emerge quite soon, I think. This new technique definitely has the potential to achieve its aims, however it’s difficult to imply accurately whilst (or if) that may be. For now, I’d give it 10 years, at least.

Cool Factor: 4/5

The environmental functions on their own are genuinely staggering. In addition, the sights we could be treated to could be simply breathtaking. The list of uses for technology like that is as long as your arm and also the material is both exciting and worth discussing at parties. Bring on the glowing plants, I say!