The technique, called metabolic stress disinfection (MSDD), was developed by Manuel Lagunas-Solar and his team at University of California, Davis (Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture DOI 10.1002/jsfa2538).
Tim Essert, the Principle Electronics Engineer on the project, explains that MSDD works by subjecting insects on fruit and vegetables to alternating vacuum and carbon dioxide. This effectively suffocates organisms because they require oxygen to live. Ethanol gas is also used to kill fungi and bacteria.
The technique could replace the use of post harvest pesticides, and may complete the phasing out of ozone depleting methyl bromide. In 1997 160 governments promised to phase out its use by 2005 as part of the Montreal Protocol, but some exceptions were granted for the food and farming industries.
“The initial hardware cost of an MSDD system is higher than methyl bromide, but the cost of chemicals is much cheaper, so that eventually it would pay for itself”, Essert told Chemistry & Industry. Around $20 - $40 worth of methyl bromide is needed to fumigate one pallet of fruit, whereas Carbon Dioxide and Ethanol used to treat with MSDD, assuming no recovery, would cost about $10.00.
MSDD also has additional benefits to the environment, as the gasses can be recovered and recycled.
Microjet generator for highly viscous fluids
13.02.2018 | Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology
Sweet route to greater yields
08.02.2018 | Rothamsted Research
A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.
In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...
A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.
By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...
Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...
For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.
In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy