What if Bioluminescence Were Used To Produce Light Instead Of Electricity?

Categories: Energy

What if street lamps or stores could work without electricity? A French start-up has developed Glowee, a living lighting energy solution using bioluminescent microorganisms, which requires no electricity and releases very little CO2 and light pollution. Bioluminescence is a chemical reaction regulated by a gene, enabling organisms to produce light naturally. The bioluminescent bacteria are then put into a transparent shell that can take any shape.

Glowee’s young inventors presented their concept during the ‪#‎COP21‬ international conference in Paris.

What if we would no longer need electricity to produce light? 

Glowee, the light from the sea! A living lighting energy, needing no electricity consumption, emitting very few CO2 and light pollution. A light coming directly from nature, at the crossroads of biomimicry and synthetic biology, ready to revolutionize our way to produce, consume and light up!

Are you familiar with bioluminescence? 

Bioluminescence is a chemical reaction regulated by a gene, enabling living organisms to produce light naturally. Over 90% of marine organisms are bioluminescent (algae, jellyfishes, squids, shrimps ... to name but a few).

How do we use bioluminescence?

We cultivate bacteria with bioluminescent property coming from squids, that we put into our product, a transparent shell that can take any shape !

What are the applications of our technology?

Glowee has a great usage potential, the reason is simple : light is everywhere !

We chose to make the uses evolve with the technology itself, going through different steps. 

Ephemeral installations 

Glowee's added value is not confined to the fantastic light it emits. By using Glowee, become a pioneer of the biotech revolution and show your engagement for a more sustainable world!
Duration : 1 night

Shopfront Lighting

from january 2017

Use Glowee to enlight your shopfront and stay within the boundaries of the French decree of 2013 forbidding the electrical lighting of shops & offices at night! Benefit from this cold, soft and unique light to gain in visibility, while fighting against global warming

 Duration: 1 month - subscription-based business model

Urban landscape

from 2018

Glowee is a light that can easily be integrated to the urban landscape. Buildings, signs, highlights, urban furniture ... the potential for use is limitless!

Disruption and sustainability at every level

Glowee's main goal is to tackle the damages made to nature, by offering a clean lighting system that would need no electricity, and emit very low light pollution & CO2. We do so by disrupting the whole process!.

Raw material 

The bacteria we use are non-pathogenic and non-toxic. They only need sugar and oxygen to emit light. One of our goals is to improve their capacity to renew themselves their stock of nutrients, to part from external resources.


Our raw material is alive, and manufactured through a culture process. Bacteria multiply exponentially, when placed in a supportive environment. The raw material creates itself, which gives us an outstanding potential of scalability. Only low infrastructures are required. Moreover, the whole production process has a very low ecological footprint.


In terms of consumption, our product is endowed with many advantages. No electricity consumption means less greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, its light is cold which means that all the energy generated is used in the light production process. It is also less intense allowing to limit the effect of light pollution.

via Glowee

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