The natural shape of the DNA that carries genetic information in living organisms is similar to the standard ‘LEGO’ group that we buy from the store and contain specific pieces and colors, each of which represents a building unit.
But what if the DNA is made in the laboratory by determining the arrangement and structure of construction units (nucleotides) in a way that serves a specific function? It will be more like someone who designs the ‘League’ pieces in its own workshop, so that it can choose the color, shape and size for each cube, and create its unique collection from those in the store, and this is the philosophy of ‘artificial DNA’ which Chinese scientists designed to achieve my desalination functions Sea water and the extraction of uranium minerals from it.
From ‘design’ to ‘mineral extraction’
In the study, published by the journal Sins Advances, the researchers detailed their new style of desalination, with an additional function, which is the extraction of uranium metal, through several steps:
- First: Sequence design
DNA consists of “nucleotides”, and each “neutriot” consists of a sugar molecule and a group of phosphate, and one of the four nitrogenous rules: adenine, themes, cytozine or ganagan, and the sequence of these rules along the DNA bar; Genetic information.
In artificial DNA, researchers can handle these serials and engineer to achieve specific functions, such as association with certain minerals or facilitating some chemical processes, so the first step in this work was the description of the specific DNA sequence necessary for the required function.
- Second: Chemical creation
Using chemical reactions, scientists have built the DNA chains atom after an atom, and through specialized machines and reagents, they added nucleotides construction units in the correct order and followed the designed sequence.
- Third: purification
Where the complex DNA is purified to remove any unwanted impurities or products from the chemical composition
- .Fourth: Verification
Then the compound DNA is verified to make sure it matches the intended sequence, using various techniques such as the DNA sequence.
- Fifth: Integration into hydrogel
Once the artificial DNA is ready, it is merged into hydrogel (water generation), to become part of a hydrogen system designed to fly water efficiently when exposed to solar energy.
- Sixth: The reinforcement with graphine oxide
Graphine oxide (a substance known for its excellent properties in the absorption of light) is inserted into the hydrogen supported by DNA, and this addition enhances the ability of hydrogen to absorb solar energy, which makes the process of evaporation of water more efficient.
- Seventh: Selective Minerals Extraction
During the evaporation of water, the DNA hydrogen, which is supplied when designed with the enzyme of the ureranel DNA; High capacity to selectively extract minerals – such as uranium – from sea water.
The `ureranel ‘DNA enzyme is a type of motivational DNA that shows a specific rapprochement of’ uranel ions’, which is a form of uranium that is common in sea water, and this enzyme plays a decisive role in extracting uranium, because it is designed to have a high privacy To pick up ‘uranel ions’, this means that it can be selectively associated with it, even in the presence of other ions in the sea, and this privacy is necessary to extract uranium efficiently without capturing unwanted materials.
Work under solar lighting
The entire system operates under solar lighting that drives water evaporation and mineral extraction operations. Simulation and laboratory experiments revealed that the gradual temperature resulting from solar lighting increases the transportation of ions, which increases the enhancement of desalination efficiency and mineral extraction in general.
The researchers tested the system performance in the natural sea water, and showed the ability to vaporize water quickly and extract minerals selectively, providing a sustainable solution to sweeten sea water.
The system showed a high capacity capacity of 5.7 mg per gram of uranium from the natural sea water, due to the rapid ion transportation resulting from high solar and selective interstitial evaporation.
“Their new system can provide easy -to -use devices suitable for sea water treatment in the future, a solution that should be expanded due to an increase. Fresh water scarcity, which represents a threat to societies due to rapid population and economic growth.
To facilitate access to fresh water, the need to desalinate sea water, which represents up to 97% of the total water content on the ground.
While researchers have developed techniques for desalination of sea water with solar energy as a promising way to produce sea water without additional energy consumption, Liang confirms that their method is promising, because it provides, along with seawater desalination, extracting one of the precious metals, uranium
Positive results awaited by the application challenge
For his part, a professor of water in the south of the Egyptian Valley University, Khaled Abdel -Zahir, separates between what the study has reached at the small level, and the application challenge on a large scale.
In a telephone conversation with Al -Jazeera Net, he explains that the study reveals an innovative experience in desalination that is achieved according to the experiments that were conducted on the small scale a set of environmental and economic benefits, including
- Reducing energy consumption:
DNA hydrogen engineering efficiently in the water desalination process helps reduce dependence on traditional energy sources, which reduces the environmental effect associated with traditional water desalination methods that often require large inputs of energy.
- Reducing environmental effect:
The selective nature of DNA, especially in mineral extraction, may reduce the environmental impact of water desalination by reducing the extraction of unwanted substances, and this selectivity can lead to more environmentally friendly processes and reduce potential damage to ecosystems.
- Sustainable use of resources:
The ability to extract precious metals such as uranium from sea water using artificial DNA may contribute to a more sustainable use of resources, and this can reduce the need for traditional mining methods, which can have significant environmental consequences.
- Costing effectiveness
Solar water desalination using artificial DNA can be an effective cost solution, especially in the areas that have a abundant sunlight.
But despite Khaled Abdel -Zahir’s recognition of these benefits, which seem outwardly from the results of the experiments included in the study, the important question that is asked is: ‘Will these benefits remain on application on a broader scale?’ ‘
In this context, it refers to a set of challenges that must be resolved to move from the level of experiments to the application, namely:
- First: the ability to expand, as the guarantee of the survival of the method is effective in terms of cost on the broader domains is very important for practical implementation.
- Second: The cost of synthesis of DNA, its creation can be expensive, and therefore the treatment of the economic feasibility of this process on a large scale is important for the commercial feasibility of this technology.
- Third: The durability and the possibility of reusing the DNA hydrogel.
- Fourth: The real world test, although researchers conducted a small field experience, the event must be verified in large -scale field experiences and form different areas.