Biomimicry
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How Birds are Helping Airbus Build Quieter Planes

How Birds are Helping Airbus Build Quieter Planes | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"The habits and anatomy of birds are being used by boffins at Airbus to develop quieter and more fuel efficient planes. The aviation giant, which makes and designs wings in Broughton, Flintshire, and Filton, Gloucestershire, employs Professor Norman Wood to unlock the mysteries of the natural world to help gain a commercial advantage. 
It is using so-called ‘biomimicry’ in the design of intelligent wings that react automatically to the environment, just as an eagle’s or a peregrine falcon’s do."

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Zipp 454 NSW Wheels Take Design Cues From Whales

Zipp 454 NSW Wheels Take Design Cues From Whales | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"[The new] 454’s wheels feature a lumpy rim profile, called SawTooth, that Zipp claims delivers unrivaled stability in crosswinds while also improving aerodynamics. For the 454, Zipp looked to humpback whales and, specifically, the lumps on the leading edges of their pectoral fins. Called tubercles, these protrusions make humpbacks more agile by keeping water attached to their flippers when they turn. In the same way that a plane can stall when air separates from the wing during high-speed maneuvers, uncontrolled turbulence over a whale’s flipper makes turning more difficult. Tubercles keep the water attached as it flows past. Zipp says its SawTooth tubercles, which the company calls “Hyperfoils,” make deep-section rims more stable in crosswinds by forcing air to slip around and off the rims in a much more predictable manner. 

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Wind Turbines With Owl Wings Could Silently Make Extra Energy

Wind Turbines With Owl Wings Could Silently Make Extra Energy | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Moving silently through the air is not just for the birds. Wind farms inspired by the stealthy flight of owls could generate more energy without annoying those who live nearby, say researchers."

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Altin Pevqeli's curator insight, September 14, 2015 10:26 PM

If they did make turbines inspired by the flight of owls which is silent, it would be a tremendous job. It would solve one of the biggest problems of turbine which is noise. If there isn't much noise people wouldn't mind them, making it so people could build more in areas.

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Studying Owls to Improve Aircraft

Studying Owls to Improve Aircraft | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Many owls have the extraordinary ability to fly in almost complete silence. Could this adaptation have implications for the way we design aircraft?

 

Photo details: Snowy Owl, Saint Barthelemy, Near Montreal, Quebec. Copyright © 2010, Alan D. Wilson. http://www.naturespicsonline.com

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Yves Bonis's curator insight, December 9, 2014 3:51 AM

Le vol silencieux des hiboux a déjà inspiré le Shinkansen - le "TGV" japonais. Il pourrait bien aider également l'aviation...

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Feathers in Flight Inspire Advanced Anti-Turbulence Systems

Feathers in Flight Inspire Advanced Anti-Turbulence Systems | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Inspired by nature's own anti-turbulence devices – feathers – researchers have developed an innovative system that could spell the end of turbulence on flights. Researchers from the Unmanned Systems Research Team at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, have lodged a provisional patent on the system, which mimics the way feathers help birds detect disturbances in the air."

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Zachary12's curator insight, November 3, 2014 4:17 PM

This is a an great idea and concept for flight similar to that comic joke that with Irish man who was the first man to fly by putting geese feather on him self. These scientist found that feather might dissipate  turbulence on a plane since we have found that birds don't experience any type of turbulence. Look at Peregrine Falcon which can reach 200 mph when diving at a prey

Brad's comment, November 30, 2014 9:55 AM
I could see this technology being more available to small aircraft like it says, but the ability to ensure no turbulence or even a claim to even reduce turbulence in large plains is unsure. Small planes are the ones who get bounced around the most, larger aircraft are still so large I am not sure if it would be cost effective. It seems like this technology is very early. When a new technology claims it is copyiung nature it must be better, or does it? I don't see how tons of metal and steel could ever really rect like a birds wing.
Zachary12's comment, November 30, 2014 10:03 PM
I think you right brad in fact that lager planes would not experience to much affect but the small planes might, and for copying nature I would have to say that they should look at this idea for feathers for small amount of effort for overcoming turbulence. But another maybe even better way would be a integrating more natures concepts to the wings like carbon fiber wings that might give to increase pressures or changes in jets streams. I use carbon fiber as an example is be cause it has a high tensile strength giving less likely hood to snap but this could give the once ridged wings more flexibility in flight to compensate.
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Eagle's Wings Inspire More Fuel Efficient Planes

Eagle's Wings Inspire More Fuel Efficient Planes | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"[...] The wing tips of steppe eagles are an ideal shape to maximize lift with a minimal wingspan. The curvature at the end of the wing reduces drag. Engineers designing the A380 copied that design, resulting in fuel savings of up to 3%, depending on if it is a long or short distance flight."

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Tiny Muscles Help Bats Fine-tune Flight

Tiny Muscles Help Bats Fine-tune Flight | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Bats appear to use a network of hair-thin muscles in their wing skin to control the stiffness and shape of their wings as they fly, according to a new study. The finding provides new insight about the aerodynamic fine-tuning of membrane wings, both natural and man-made.
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Antennae Help Flies "Cruise" In Gusty Winds

Antennae Help Flies "Cruise" In Gusty Winds | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Caltech researchers uncover a mechanism for how fruit flies regulate their flight speed, using both vision and wind-sensing information from their antennae.
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Big Idea, Small Compressor: Silent Fan Inspired by Nature

Big Idea, Small Compressor: Silent Fan Inspired by Nature | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Low noise levels are important in industries where the user can benefit from having the air compressor within close proximity to the work station, such as in the woodworking or automotive industry. The GA VSD+ uses a technologically advanced fan to help achieve noise levels low enough for a normal conversation to be held while the machine is running. The fan blade utilizes a design with a serrated edge that is inspired by the aerodynamic and mostly silent wings of an owl. With an aerodynamic design, the fan needs less energy to cleave through the air, making it more energy efficient."

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Humpback whales inspire better helicopter design

Humpback whales inspire better helicopter design | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

The connection between humpback whales and helicopters might not seem obvious. But a group of researchers in Germany are thinking way outside-the-box, applying nature’s design to helicopters to make them faster and more maneuverable.

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Biomimicry Helps Reduce Wind Turbine Noise

Biomimicry Helps Reduce Wind Turbine Noise | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Many species of owl are able to hunt in effective silence by suppressing their noise at sound frequencies above 1.6 kilohertz (kHz) - over the range that can be heard by humans.
A team of researchers studying the acoustics of owl flight—including Justin W. Jaworski, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and mechanics at Lehigh University—is working to pinpoint the mechanisms that accomplish this virtual silence in order to improve the aerodynamic design of wind turbines, aircraft, naval ships and even automobiles. Now, the team has succeeded—through physical experiments and theoretical modeling—in using the downy canopy of owl feathers as a model to inspire the design of a 3D-printed, wing attachment that reduces wind turbine noise by 10 decibels without impacting aerodynamics."

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Art Jones's curator insight, November 21, 2016 5:02 PM

It seems that we we feel when we feel we are being the most creative and innovating, we are arriving at a level of technical development that allows us to simply mimic those wondrous innovations that mother nature figured out long long ago.

Marcelo Errera's curator insight, November 26, 2016 7:58 AM
Very interesting feature. Indeed Nature has undergone a long process of design evolution. 
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Scientists Just Figured Out How This Bird Can Fly For Months Without Landing

Scientists Just Figured Out How This Bird Can Fly For Months Without Landing | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Plenty of birds fly vast distances on their migratory trips around planet Earth. But the most amazing of all might the frigate bird, which can stay aloft for two months straight without landing or resting. How the heck do they do that?

A team of biologists led by Henri Weimerskirch at the French National Center for Scientific Research just announced the results of a major new study on great frigates (Fregata minor), these fascinating seabirds native to the central Indian and Pacific Oceans. Using super-lightweight GPS trackers, the biologists followed four dozen birds from 2011 to 2015, some for up to two years continuously. What they found was astonishing. The birds could stay aloft for up to 56 days without landing, gliding for hundreds of miles per day with wing-flaps just every 6 minutes, and reaching altitude of more than 2.5 miles.
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Marcelo Errera's curator insight, July 4, 2016 3:19 PM
A design that evolved together with a flight plan. Evolution is simultaneous for all traits.
In order to move mass over the Earth surface, i.e., to make energy flow, systems evolved in order to reduce the exergy expenditure.
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Memo to Carmakers: This Fish Is a Bad Model

Memo to Carmakers: This Fish Is a Bad Model | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"In 2005, Mercedes-Benz revealed a concept car with a strange shape. Called the Bionic, the cartoonishly snub-nosed vehicle was modeled after Ostracion cubicus, the yellow boxfish. Car manufacturers aren’t the only ones to take inspiration from this weird coral dweller. But researchers now say engineers who mimicked the boxfish might have been misled."

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Biomimetics: the Nature as a Source of Inspiration for A350 XWB Design.

Biomimetics: the Nature as a Source of Inspiration for A350 XWB Design. | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
"[...] In a macroscopic axis, the A350 XWB considers the actively deformation of the surfaces to provide the best aerodynamic performance and control of load for each flight conditions; takeoff, climb, cruise, approach, landing, maneuver, turbulence-encounters, etc. This is what birds, fish and marine mammals perform beautifully, called "morphing".  The idea is to move from a 'rigid' world to flexibility and adaptation technologies."
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Marcelo Errera's curator insight, July 10, 2015 10:42 AM

The design evolution process never ends. There are some robust associations between features that guide the designs which live longer. 

 

In other words, the best design today will eventually be replaced by tomorrow's  best of "de jour".

 

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Technology Unlocks the Mysteries of Bird Flight

Technology Unlocks the Mysteries of Bird Flight | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
As long as there have been people watching birds, there have been theories as to how and why they do what they do. In the modern era, theories about why birds flock and why they migrate in v-formations have abounded, yet answers have been few. But new research using creative technology on both starling murmurations and bald ibis’ migration reveals that complex flight dynamics and rapid-fire adjustments based on sensory feedback previously believed impossible for birds are indeed occurring.
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The Car Designer Who Turned a Sailfish Into a Supercar

The Car Designer Who Turned a Sailfish Into a Supercar | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
The sailfish can swim faster than a cheetah can run – and the secrets behind its speed inspired McLaren’s Frank Stephenson to create a new car.
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Bio-inspired Unmanned Aircraft Capable of Soaring Like Birds

Bio-inspired Unmanned Aircraft Capable of Soaring Like Birds | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Researchers are developing a bio-inspired unmanned aircraft capable of soaring like birds, boosting energy efficiency and endurance. The research team is aiming to be the first in the world to demonstrate an autonomous unmanned aircraft that can mimic birds by using updrafts around buildings to stay airborne.
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Birds' V Formation Mystery 'Solved'

Birds' V Formation Mystery 'Solved' | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"The mystery of why so many birds fly in a V formation may have been solved. Scientists from the Royal Veterinary College fitted data loggers to a flock of rare birds that were being trained to migrate by following a microlight. This revealed that the birds flew in the optimal position - gaining lift from the bird in front by remaining close to its wingtip. The study, published in the journal Nature, also showed that the birds timed their wing beats."

Miguel Prazeres's insight:

Flying commercial planes in formation much like birds do has been conceptualized as a way to save fuel by flying in formation: http://www.triplepundit.com/2009/08/taking-cues-from-birds-to-green-the-airline-industry/

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Airbus and Biomimicry: Nature Inspired Aviation

Airbus and Biomimicry: Nature Inspired Aviation | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"What do velvet, the skin of a shark, and advancements in aircraft aerodynamics have in common? The answer rests in a field of scientific study that involves examining what can be extracted, learned and duplicated from the natural world. Known as ‘biomimicry,” or biologically inspired engineering, this is the study and imitation of nature’s best ideas to help solve human challenges. A growing number of aeronautical innovations have been inspired by an array of natural structures, organs and materials – and these tried and tested patterns of the natural world will continue to be a powerful source of inspiration in the future." 

 

Photo details: Bald Eagle , Morris Valley Road, Harrison Mills, British ColumbiaCopyright © 2008, Alan D. Wilson. http://www.naturespicsonline.com

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Biomimicry as applied to the Japanese Shinkansen train

Biomimicry as applied to the Japanese Shinkansen train | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Who would have guessed that the design of an electric passenger train had been influenced by animal biology?"

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