Today’s Solutions: December 06, 2023

If we want to build a sustainable future, we may have to revisit what it is we’re actually building things out of. And though the science around the idea is just beginning to emerge, one prime candidate may be using actual living materials like fungus. Or concrete churned out by tiny microbial factories.

Will Srubar, a University of Colorado Boulder materials and engineering researcher, argues in a new The Conversation essay that, living, self-growing, and self-repairing structures may be our best bet to green up the construction industry’s act.

“Living architecture is moving from the realm of science fiction into the laboratory as interdisciplinary teams of researchers turn living cells into microscopic factories,” wrote Srubar, who’s published a number of academic papers on living materials over the last five months. Developing living materials, supposedly, wouldn’t just cut financial costs of repairs and assembly, but also, do away with many of the environmental tolls of manufacturing conventional building materials.

Of course, pivoting to living materials would require a massive paradigm shift, even if scientists figured out how to make these materials both practical and cost-effective. In fact, that might be the hardest part; getting architects and designers to actually consider living materials—as we see with the example of concrete being made from tiny microbes.

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Cultivating climate resilience at COP28: 7 game-changing food and agriculture...

The convergence of global pressures, such as climate change and the mounting demands of a fast-growing population, has shone a bright light on agriculture's ...

Read More

4 science-backed strategies to reduce risk of heart failure

Your heart, a powerhouse organ, performs a monumental task daily, pumping gallons of blood throughout your body. However, if this critical organ fails, it ...

Read More

How to change people’s minds without triggering a negative response

People don’t like being told what to do. There’s even a word for it: reactance. “Psychological reactance is a negative emotional state that we feel ...

Read More

Enjoy these 4 health benefits when you eat figs

Taking a bite into a ripe fresh fig is one of nature’s finest taste experiences. Your tongue will recognize flavors reminiscent of honey and ...

Read More