Scientists have created bacteria covered in tiny semiconductors that generate a potential fuel source from sunlight, carbon dioxide and water.
The so-called “cyborg” bugs produce acetic acid, a chemical that can then be turned into fuel and plastic.
In lab experiments, the bacteria proved much more efficient at harvesting sunlight than plants.
The work was presented at the American Chemical Society meeting in Washington.
Researchers have been attempting to artificially replicate photosynthesis for many years.