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 (Back On) ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Bacteria Now Make Biofuel Like Oil
'They have ... germs that eat pretty near anything, and produce oil as a waste product.'- Hal Clement, 1950.
Youthful Brain With A Flip Of A Molecular Switch
I need all the brain plasticity I can get.
Human 'Quadruple Helix' DNA
'Their genetic structure, based on the quadruple sterated octohelix...'- Douglas Adams, 1978.
The Plastic Eaters - Amazon Fungus Lives On Plastic
'the smell of the rotting plastic began to hang permanently in the air...'- Davis/Pedlar, 1971
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.
MIT Robot Cheetah Video Shows Gait Transition
'The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's.'
TrackingPoint Smart Rifle
Not your typical 'smart bullet' approach.
'Hello, Computer!' Google Now Highlighted at IO13
Sky City's 220 Stories Are Go
'It rested among green parklands and... stood in total isolation, a glittering block of whites and flashing windows dotted with colors.'
CARMAT Bioprosthetic Total Human Heart Replacement
'George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...'
Personal Sniffer Robots
'...The ticking combinations of the olfactory system of the hound.'
Physical Exam? We've Got Apps
See the future of handheld, personal medical devices.
The Interplanetary Internet, Vint Cerf Speaking
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'
Drosophila Robotica, The Mechanical Fly
'... the Scarab [flying robot] buzzed into the great workroom as any intruding insect might...'
Robo-Raven Flapping Wing Robot Bird
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Japan's Nursing Home Robot Plan
Let's make the Roujin Z-0001 Robotic Bed!
Samsung Smart TVs With Gesture Control
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'
Swiss HCPVT Giant Photovoltaic 'Flower'
'...leaning against one of the slender stalks of a sunshade-photocell collector.'
Mini-Livers Made By 3D Printer
Organleggers may experience an employment downturn.
Smartphone Sensor System Tracks Gunfire
'Sound trackers on the roof could zero in on weapons action...'
Bacteria Now Make Biofuel Like Oil
'They have ... germs that eat pretty near anything, and produce oil as a waste product.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories