TechKnow 121: DNA testing, solar energy & eating bugs

January 26, 2014 3:00PM ET

Home DNA testing, molten salt can store solar power and bugs are a great source of protein


Join our expert "TechKnow" contributors Phil Torres, Rachelle Oldmixon and Kyle Hill as they explore scientific innovations and their impact on our lives. Rachelle uses a home DNA kit to learn more about her chance of hereditary disease, which is also analyzed by medical experts. Kyle visits a solar field in Nevada that traps sunlight in molten salt to create renewable energy. And Phil puts his entomology chops to the test to learn how bugs may be the most overlooked protein. 

More on DNA tests, solar energy & eating bugs


23andme is a private personal genomics and biotechnology company that provides at home genome testing for individuals to learn more about their own DNA. Personal testing kits can be ordered online and after a sample is sent back to 23andme's lab, the individual receives a report on ancestry and medical information based on the test's genome detection.

Solar Reserve

Solar Reserve is a "developer of large-scale solar energy projects." Their Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) technology uses thousands of tracking mirrors, called heliostats, to reflect and concentrate sunlight onto one point, where it is used to generate heat which is then converted into energy. The process uses liquid molten salt to store this energy, which can be used to generate electricity at any time of the day or night.

World Entomophagy

World Entomophagy was founded by University of Georgia students in 2010. The organization's goals include providing a reliable and sustainable source of insects to chefs and innovators in the field of entomophagy, setting industry standards for safety and health, and integrating insects into the American culinary culture.

Bug Appetit

Bug Appetit at the Audubon Nature Institute in New Orleans, LA offers daily demostrations in the preparation and cooking of different insects as well as a "Bug Buffet," where guests can sample some "tasty bug treats" for themselves. 

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