Design, Sci + Tech

Ecovative helps build biodegradable drone

As part of their submission for the iGem 2014 competition, a team of students from several universities has collaborated to build grow a biodegradable drone. Central to the effort is the mycelium-based chassis grown by 2013 Fuller Challenge winners Ecovative Design, which was then wrapped in a cellulose skin to aid in aerodynamics. Made of these biodegradable parts, the drone’s electronics are also made of nano-printed silver particles, and it is designed to decompose in the environment, were it to crash.

While drones have had something of a negative, “sinister” connotation due to their military, non-civilian uses, the team envisions their drone to be used in sensitive environmental areas, where there the decomposition of the drone would minimize its ecological impact.

Read more: DIY Drones, The Atlantic