Spy Moth Cyborg On/Off Switch Perfected
Spy moth cyborgs are yet another step closer to reality as Cornell scientists use microfluidics to manipulate the moth's metabolism. This device acts as an on/off switch, and can dictate how long they flap their wings. This research follows closely on news that Spy Moth Cyborg Control Circuits Embedded In Pupal Stage Successfully.
(Spy moth cyborgs on/off switch)
Led by David Erickson, the Cornell team is the first to successfully plant microfluidic chips into insects. The tiny chips contain chemicals to paralyze the insects for short periods. The microfluidic chips therefore act as an on/off switch for the spy cyborg moths. One of the chemicals is the neurostransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a component of spider venom.
GABA can immobilize the moth cyborg in less than a minute, and prevent it from flying for up to two hours. The tobacco hornworm moth is used due partly to its large size; it has a wingspan of up to ten centimeters and a flight range measured in kilometers.
Humanitarians hope that the moth cyborgs can be trained to detect hazardous chemicals; they could fly into areas devastated by natural disasters and quickly identify contaminants. Military leaders hope to use them as spies, or to find explosives or landmines.
The idea of insect cyborgs with embedded control systems was originated by sf writer Thomas A. Easton in his 1990 novel Sparrowhawk. Read about the Roachsters from the book. Read more about how his book inspired scientists in this earlier article HI-MEMS: Cyborg Beetle Microsystem.
From Chemistry World.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/10/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Mushroom Eats Plastic, Saves Planet
Fungus Amongus, SaveUs!
Is There Extraterrestrial Life Here In The Solar System
'How fast is it moving? ...one meter per minute.' - Arthur C. Clarke, 1982.
Chinese Fern Helps Remediate Arsenic Soil
'Bioengeering had put out a spec report on the long crawly things five months back.' - Gregory Benford, 1983.
New Lifelike Material Powered By Artificial Metabolism
'... The biological robots were not living creatures.' - Arthur C. Clarke, 1972.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Drone Swarm Lifts Truck - Not!
'It was now the season that these Birds were wont to take their flight away...'
A Passing Drone Has Covid-19 Advice
'Gold dots against blue, basketball-sized, twelve feet up.'
Prototype Robotic Masseur Has The Touch
'The automatic massager began to fumble gently...'
Trash Sorting AI Robot Presages Skynet, Thanks A Lot
Keep your head down, Kyle Reese.
Electric Unicycle Is A Tumblebug
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity, since it is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.'
Another Soil Bacterium Eats Plastic
'...the plastic was dissolved before his eyes.'
reLive Memorial Come Back As A Tree
'It was time - time to go again. She touched the leaf. She was wanted.'
Engineered Living Building Materials
'... it was the cheapest building material known.'
Draw Circuits With Conductive Ink
'It's rewiring things... squeezing silver toothpaste in a ribbon along the printed circuitry.'
Arkangel: Automatic Visual Censoring
It's whatever the Party says it is, Winston.
NASA Competition To Design A Bucket Drum For Moon Mining
'There was a heap of discarded ore where Grantline had carted and dumped it...'
Medical Assistant Robot May Roam The Halls Of Hospitals
'Take care, sir.'
No Autonomous Trucks? Wait, What?
'...it resembled conventional human-operated transportation vehicles, but with one exception -- there was no driver's cabin.'
As Big As A Biltong - World's Largest 3D Printer
'Huge and old, it squatted in the center of the settlement park... On the concrete platform... lay a heap of originals to be duplicated.'
Drones Used To Smuggle Contraband Into Prison
'And some mega chip inside so it never runs into anything and no cop ever sees it.'
Are You Ready For Commercial Space Travel?
'It wasn't a pleasant trip; it was a miserable trip on a miserable, undersized tourist rocket...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories