Japanese scientists create artificial bees (3 photos + video)
Researchers from the Japanese National Institute of advanced industrial science and technology said that one accidental discovery will help them to create artificial bees, which, if not replace the insect workaholic will be able to provide substantial assistance in the cultivation of agricultural products. Besides, artificial pollinators can be used where the insects are, for whatever reason, just no.
It all began in 2007, when the chemist Eijiro Miyako conducted research on ionic liquids (salts in a liquid state) in search of the solvent, which would be well spent, Elektrichestvo. After a failed experiment with a bottle resulting in a sticky gel scientist put it in the closet, which was discovered in our days. It turned out that for all the years the fluid has lost its properties, has evaporated and dried up, but began to collect dust. This property led Miyako to create artificial pollinators of plants.
For starters, scientists decided to test the ability of the gel to collect dust in the laboratory, which on the backs of the ants left a few drops of liquid and put them in a container with tulips. As a result, the insects with the gel collected more pollen than control group subjects. After this, the researchers stuck to the miniature drone is a small fur, striped, treated with gel, thus obtaining a kind of Robo-bee. The UAV was effective artificial pollinator in the experiment, with flowers of lilies, while the drone without stripes with viscous fluid was useless and not coped with the task.
Of course, drones have a very short time of flight, which effectively nullifies their effectiveness. Besides, they have to be managed manually, but the researchers believe that in the future automatic control of a swarm of these drones with artificial intelligence will become real, allowing for the need to replace the bees, which, in the opinion of melittology, facing extinction.