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Symbiotic Mine Clearer

Fungus catalyzes TNT to get nitrates.
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Find a fungus that can be induced to create catalytic antibodies to breakdown TNT. See link. Hopefully the fungus can use the nitrates in protein synthesis thereby giving the fungus a biological impetus to do so.

Then find an insect, hopefully flying, that will grow the fungus like leaf cutter ants grow fungus with the leaf parts to eat. Hopefully the insect will learn to tract down the traces of TNT land mines are known to exude into the environment. The fungus can track back the concentration gradient to the mine and start emptying the mine. The fungus benefits from the symbiotic relationship in being gardened. The insect benefits from the symbiotic relationship by getting a high protein food source.

If an insect can't be found then at least known mine fields could be cleared by growing the fungus in the field.

cjacks, Oct 08 2005

Antibody catalysis http://www.whfreema...logy/CH05/catab.htm
breaking down small things for science [cjacks, Oct 08 2005]

Biodegradeable landmines http://www.zeta.org...s/landminesdoc.html
Not quite the same idea but along the same track. [DrBob, Oct 09 2005]

[link]






       Most mining is done with ammonium nitrate, diesel fuel mixtures. Enzymes and antibodies are very specific in action. Besides the explosives will be as safe as any food and can be preserved similarly. You just don’t want it lying around the environment for decades.
cjacks, Oct 09 2005
  

       Opps I misread that. I don’t doubt most mining is done with expletives. Glad mine aren’t powerful enough to crack rock.
cjacks, Oct 09 2005
  
      
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