(Credit: University of Warwick)
When hearing that scientists in Canada and the UK have sorted out how to spray molecules of vodka to send a generic message a few meters through open space, one should be forgiven for concluding that said scientists were helping themselves to a bit of the ol’ liquor cabinet in the process.
Not necessarily so. The first text to be literally (as opposed to the countless that have been figuratively) fueled by alcohol could prove to be a major step forward in the world of molecular communication, with a range of applications in environments where electromagnetic waves don’t work so well — for instance, underwater, underground, and submerged in the human body.
(Credit: PLOS ONE)
Molecular communication abounds in nature, of course. Think bees spraying pheromones to warn others if there’s a threat nearby. Or calcium signaling in cells, which plays a key role in, for instance, a hear… [Read more]