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Change site permissions – Computer

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Future technology: 22 ideas about to change our world

1

Self-healing ‘living concrete’

Bacteria growing and mineralising in the sand-hydrogel structure © Colorado University Boulder/PA

Bacteria growing and mineralising in the sand-hydrogel structure © Colorado University Boulder/PA

Scientists have developed what they call living concrete by using sand, gel and bacteria.

Researchers said this building material has structural load-bearing function, is capable of self-healing and is more environmentally friendly than concrete – which is the second most-consumed material on Earth after water.

The team from the University of Colorado Boulder believe their work paves the way for future building structures that could “heal their own cracks, suck up dangerous toxins from the air or even glow on command”.

2

Living robots

Scientists create ‘living robot’ © Douglas Blackiston/Tufts University/PA

© Douglas Blackiston/Tufts University/PA

Tiny hybrid robots made using stem cells from frog embryos could one day be used to swim around human bodies to specific areas requiring medicine, or to gather microplastic in the oceans.

“These are novel living machines,” said Joshua Bongard, a computer scientist and robotics expert

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