Daily Management Review

Silk Leaf To Produce Oxygen Artificially


09/08/2015


Oxygen can be produced artificially now with the help of Melchiorri’s Silk Leaf.



Silk Leaf To Produce Oxygen Artificially
Thanks to the development of a graduate from the “Royal College of Art” now oxygen can be available in space. Julian Melchiorri supposed to have designed the “silk leaf” that is capable of creating oxygen, which can add back to the heavily polluted earth the much needed wisp of oxygen besides generating oxygen “for space travel”. The development took place in collaboration with “a silk lab from Tufts University”.
 
A matrix was created by extracting proteins from chloroplasts and silk which shaped the leaf. Chloroplasts, the green pigment of the flora is responsible for the algae and plants to carry on the process of photosynthesis. When light falls on the leaf and water is provided to silk synthetic leaf, it begins to function like a “real leaf” and begins the production of oxygen. Melchiorri explains:
“It’s very light, low energy-consuming. It’s completely biological and my idea was to use the efficiency of nature in a man-made environment. I created some lighting out of this material, using the light to illuminate the house but at the same time to create oxygen for us.”
 
However, Malchiorri’s dream of silk leaf producing oxygen gives him wings to shatter the boundaries of houses and fly to the star trodden path of spaces. Consequently, he dreams bigger than a “small fixtures” for the artificial leaves. Therefore he informs:
"NASA is researching different ways to produce oxygen for long-distance space journeys to let us live in space. This material could allow us to explore space much further than we can now."
 
When about the Martian-human settlements, these leaves can play a crucial role, as they can be fitted onto “the facades of buildings and inside ventilation systems” whereby they can produce fresh oxygen. Moreover, astronauts can also avail of their use in their spatial missions. Although, the whole things sounds quite fascinating and mirrors the process of Photosysthesis, in reality, it differs from the ways of nature. The way these silk leaves work has been summarised within an equation given below:
6CO2 + 6H2O + --(Sunlight Energy)--> C6H12O6 + 6O2
 
When one simple talks about photosynthesis, there are various components that needs to be take into consideration as the process of photosynthesis is performed by plants in order to break down the sugar and to “create food for themselves”. In the case of Silk Leaf, the carbon dioxide, light, oxygen, and water can be accounted for but the missing links are the presence of sugar. In fact:
“There isn’t an explanation as to what happens to the carbon and hydrogen that the leaf takes in. Silk Leaf lacks the vacuoles, stems, and roots that store food in plants”.
 
Although, researches conducted by ISS have shown plants can be grown in the space, yet it requires a considerable amount of “soil, water, and plants” in order to provide sufficient oxygen for an astronaut to breathe, therefore these Silk Leaves which are “a lightweight alternative” can prove “beneficial”.





References:
http://www.iflscience.com
 







Science & Technology

Germany Introduces The First Ever Train To Run On 100% Hydrogen

Germany Plans On Cyber Security Research To End Reliance On U.S. Tech

Fuchsia will kill Android by 2023: Top 5 facts about the new OS

New Study Finds Goats Interact More With Happy People

More than 32 thousand "smart" houses under threat of hacker attack

Internet addiction and children: Global plague

Apple takes up to develop Apple Watch for health monitoring

Hyperloop is growing in Europe

Analysts: US gamers prefer mobile games

Google Assistant Winner Of Head-To-Head Test Of Digital Assistants, Beats Siri And Alexa

World Politics

World & Politics

Ex-Brexit Minister Said A ‘Reset’ Is Needed For Brexit Talks

10 countries with the best healthcare systems

Foreign Experts To Be Allowed By North Korea For Permanent Destruction Of Missile Sites

Ireland recovers €14.3 billion from Apple

Is China going to cancel its birth limit policy?

The US is ready to start negotiations with China

US and China start 5G race

Is Czech Republic posing a threat to the European Union?