Biomining the elements of the future

  • Written by Marcos Voutsinos, PhD Candidate, Geomicrobiology, University of Melbourne
Biomining the elements of the futureJoey Kyber/Pixels, CC BY-SA

Biomining is the kind of technique promised by science fiction: a vast tank filled with microorganisms that leach metal from ore, old mobile phones and hard drives.

It sounds futuristic, but it’s currently used to produce about 5% of the world’s gold and 20% of the world’s copper. It’s also used...

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