A team at MIT has figured out a way to mutate viruses so that they churn out nanowires and help build ultra-tiny batteries. The mutations induced in several bioengineering and materials science labs at MIT induce the little bugs to build their outer shells out of cobalt oxide โ€” not a healthy thing for the virus, but a great thing if you want to build a battery anode at nanoscale. Sound complicated? Think of it this way: The virus shells are like the "skin" of the virus. Researchers have mutated these viruses to grow "skins" out of metal. I can't wait for my mutant metal skin power! [MIT engineering via BoingBoing]

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