As the world — and its landfills and water treatment plants — get more and more crowded, future houses will have to cut down on their waste. Or they could just repurpose it. For instance, they could use household sludge to feed bioluminescent bacteria to light up a room. It's so simple! Really!
This bioluminescent lamp is part of Philips' Microbial Home concept, a self-sufficient closed-loop home that wastes not and wants not. The Bio-lamp is fueled by a methane digester, which itself forms the centerpiece of the kitchen (yes) and breaks down waste into a lovely sludge.
Individual bioluminescent bacteria would be inserted into their own interesting-looking blown glass cells, forming a living lamp. Silicon tubes would connect the bacteria to the life-sustaining sludge at the lamp's base.
Bioluminescent organisms, including fireflies and some small marine organisms, produce an enzyme called luciferase, which catalyzes a chemical reaction between oxygen and a pigment called luciferin. The result is a low-intensity, ambient light, so it would work pretty well in a modernist light fixture. If the idea of waste-eating luminous bacteria does not sound appealing, the Bio-lamp could also work with a fluorescent protein filling.
"Energy-saving light bulbs will only take us so far," explains Clive van Heerden, senior director of Design-led Innovation, on Philips Design's website. "We need to push ourselves to rethink domestic appliances entirely, to rethink how homes consume energy, and how entire communities can pool resources."
Would you hang this lamp in your house?
...Or we could skip this step, too, and go straight to protoculture. Just sayin'.
gross lamp no,fertilizer ok i could see that what happens if it breaks?..... stinkapaloooza
you would need a large amount of the bacteria have any comparison with a light bulb. (just going of the pic.) So at best in it's current stage I think it would work best as a nightlight.
Seems more like a designer way to handle waste, seems great for people who carry wine classes and wear a scarf around their house. Not gonna lie though, having it in one or two rooms as a form of functional art does sound appealing
Wow, using waste to light our houses... Hm...
That picture looks more like a piece of Borg equipment.
Anyways, it looks to me that far flung explorers would use this (think Antarctica winters or dark side of the Moon) and maybe isolated villages somewhere. But in homes and apartments? I'm not convinced.
Why not "burn" the wast and compress the ashes, like http://www.popsci.com/technology/article/2011-11/new-military-garbage-tech-destroys-trash-tactical-precision
What about cleaning it?
Having a unit in each home to process that is wasteful. We already have sewage treatment plants. They could be given a methane digester, which can be burned to create energy (carbon neutral at that) and put electricity right back into the grid. No need to have a silicon plumbing system installed in every house and fixture as the article suggests.
True, how much energy is used making that fixture?
If you want to use glass and clean energy to light a room, install a window or a skylight. Want the light at night? Then get a solar cell and battery.
If you want to digest household waste for good use, put in septic lines and raise livestock on your new healthier lawn.
@delkomatic it's self cleaning.
to mars or bust!
Robert1234 How about a whole wall of this stuff? That would be super-cool.