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Elowan is a plant-robot hybrid that moves towards the light it needs.

It was invented by MIT Media Lab and is a cybernetic lifeform, which is a plant in direct dialogue with a machine. The plant is interfaced through its own electrochemical signals with a robotic extension that drives it towards the light. Plants have neutral bioelectrochemical signals inside them. They get excited by environmental conditions and conduct these signals between tissues and organs.

Elowan is an attempt to demonstrate what augmentation of nature could mean. Elowan's robotic base is a new symbiotic association with a plant. The agency of movement rests with the plant based on its own bio-electrochemical signals. In this experimental setup, electrodes are inserted into stems and ground. The weak signals are then amplified and sent to the robot, making it move in respective directions.

Learn more about the hybrid-robot that find its way towards the light, below.


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