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By Daisy Dunne For Mailonline
Published: 04:31 EDT, 31 July 2017 | Updated: 05:06 EDT, 31 July 2017
The food is created in a laboratory using a series of coffee cup-sized 'protein reactors'.
Researchers added water, carbon dioxide, and microbes into a small bioreactor.
They then exposed these elements to electrolysis, the process by which complex substances are broken down using electricity.
This process allowed researchers to gather a small amount of solid material which had a nutrition profile matching that of basic food.
Within a fortnight, the reactors can create a spoonful of single-celled proteins using just solar energy and some microbe supplements.
'In practice, all the raw materials are available from the air,' said lead researcher Juha-Pekka Pitkänen, principal scientist at the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
Have you ever wondered where trees get their mass from? One of the more common answers, ... is that the mass (increasingly bigger size) of a tree comes from the soil. Which makes sense, right? After all, we are taught that plants need soil (enhanced “dirt”) to grow. According to Michigan State University Extension, problems typically arise when asked to explain why there isn’t a big hole around a tree. If the tree is using soil, then there must be less soil around it. But studies show virtually no difference in the amount of soil in a pot when a seed is planted from the amount of soil in the same pot when the plant from that seed is harvested. So where does the mass come from?
The mass of a tree is primarily carbon. The carbon comes from carbon dioxide used during photosynthesis. During photosynthesis, plants convert the sun’s energy into chemical energy which is captured within the bonds of carbon molecules built from atmospheric carbon dioxide and water. Yes, the carbon from carbon dioxide in the air we breathe out ends up in “food” molecules (called glucose) each of which contains 6 carbon atoms (and 12 hydrogen atoms and 6 oxygen atoms).
The question was: Where do trees come from?
Meaning, when you see a tree, a big, tall, heavy one, and you wonder where did it get its mass, its thick trunk, its branches — the instinctive answer would be from the soil below, plus a little water (and, in some mysterious way, sunshine), right?
Nope, says the late Nobel laureate Richard Feynman, sitting in an easy chair, thinking out loud in a You Tube video clip from 1983: "People look at a tree and think it comes out of the ground, that plants grow out of the ground, " he says, but "if you ask, where does the substance [of the tree] come from? You find out ... trees come out of the air!"
Would it surprise you to find out that 95% of a tree is actually from carbon dioxide? Trees are largely made up of air. -- Dude in Video
Plants are composed of water, carbon-containing organics, and non-carbon-containing inorganic substances such as potassium and nitrogen.
The majority of volume in a plant cell is water; it typically comprises 80 to 90 percent of the plant's total weight. Soil is the water source for land plants. It can be an abundant source of water even if it appears dry. Plant roots absorb water from the soil through root hairs and transport it up to the leaves through the xylem. As water vapor is lost from the leaves, the process of transpiration and the polarity of water molecules (which enables them to form hydrogen bonds) draws more water from the roots up through the plant to the leaves .
originally posted by: enlightenedservant
a reply to: SlapMonkey
ETA: Actually, nevermind. There's a chance you're referring to mass while I'm referring to volume.
originally posted by: crayzeed
a reply to: ElectricUniverse
What a bummer. You forgot to add the word microbes to your headline. That word makes the biggest difference in the world.
Please tell these scientists to contact me as I can provide food quite naturally with just microbes and water. You don't need the carbon dioxide bit.
PS. didn't you know that's how life on Earth began, primordial soup and electric storms.