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A project came out of the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia that I think you’ll like. The team there is working on using the byproducts of photosynthesis to generate electricity in what’s becoming known as “biophotovoltaics.”
The moss is grown on a bed of conductive materials, a water retaining substrate, and a biological growth medium where a bacterial interaction is able to generate free electrons and run them through a battery like system (think anodes and cathodes, or the positive and negative ends of a battery) to generate electricity.
Check out the video here:
<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/119702162″>Moss Voltaics</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/elenamitro”>Elena Mitro</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>
This project reminded me of another I’d seen where designers ere actually able to power a radio using photosynthesizing moss.
These projects beg the question (especially in light of the recent criticisms for the energy use of vertical farms) of what green walls are going to look like and how new biological synergies can be explored to increase sustainability and production.
For example, would it be possible to line a greenhouse with these modular cubes below the level of the trays that are used for produce (so as not to shade them) to provide not only insulation (one of the classic benefits of green walls) but also energy? The greenhouse is already creating a happy environment for plant growth, so this seems like a logical next step.
Of course the ramifications of bioenergy go beyond vertical farms or greenhouse production. What do you think some of the biggest potential uses would be?
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