Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

BUG OFF! Pest control without the use of toxic agents

03.07.2006
A new sterilisation method for fruit and vegetables has been developed, which quite literally sucks the life out of bugs. This method could be used in place ozone-depleting chemicals, like methyl bromide, which are currently used for sterilisation.

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.

SCI Press Office | alfa
Further information:
http://www.soci.org
http://www.chemind.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Cascading use is also beneficial for wood
11.12.2017 | Technische Universität München

nachricht The future of crop engineering
08.12.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

12.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Multi-year submarine-canyon study challenges textbook theories about turbidity currents

12.12.2017 | Earth Sciences

Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

12.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>