Biomimicry
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Biomimicry
Nature inspired innovation
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Silvery Hairs Turn Ants into Walking Mirrors

Silvery Hairs Turn Ants into Walking Mirrors | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

One ant species in the Sahara Desert is covered by a silvery sheen of body hair that acts as a wearable sun shield for the creatures, a new study finds. The silvery hairs completely reflect the light like mirrors, preventing the ants from absorbing too much heat. That may help to explain how the Saharan silver ants can stay cool when temperatures in the arid region reach a blistering 122 degrees Fahrenheit (50 degrees Celsisus).

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Creepy Cat Eyes Inspire Road Markers

Creepy Cat Eyes Inspire Road Markers | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Nature’s inventiveness often inspires human innovation as in the well-known case of hook-and-loop fasteners: Swiss engineer George de Mestrel turned a hiking annoyance (burrs) into a handy tool (Velcro). But did you know that safety road markers were inspired by a cat’s eyes reflecting headlights. [...] “Eyeshine” may be most familiar as a feline phenomenon, but it occurs in a tremendous variety of animals, from moths to whales. It’s caused by the tapetum lucidum, a reflective layer behind the photosensitive part of the eye which bounces photons back, giving them a second chance to be seen. This ability is a major advantage at night and in the deep sea and has evolved many times in many different forms."

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Shadow Pavilion Informed by Biomimicry

Shadow Pavilion Informed by Biomimicry | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

The cellular Shadow Pavilion is the result of simple materials lightly manipulated and connected to dramatic effect. More than one hundred aluminum sheets, laser cut and rolled into cones of various sizes are attached in pre-assembled clusters from offsite. The lowest row buried in the soil of Matthaei Botanical Gardens, Ann Arbor, Michigan anchors the project. PLY Architecture developed the self supporting structure using software modeling to determine shadow patterns, material efficiencies, geometric tethering and assembly.
The focus of meticulous assembly disperses as the pavilion becomes land art, both reflecting and manipulating its surroundings. The design strategy is based on phyllotaxis, the pattern which forms on many flowers and cacti as successive layers of petals, leaves or nodules grow to form a spiral. The interior’s funneled light and water create a micro-environment inside.

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How the Disco Clam Got its Flash

How the Disco Clam Got its Flash | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"As molluscs go, Ctenoides ales is quite literally one of the flashiest. A native of the Indo-Pacific region, the creature is known as the disco clam because the soft tissues of its ‘lips’ flash like a mirror ball above a dance floor. A study published today finds that the disco clam achieves this using nanoparticles of silica to reflect light.".

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Electronic Paper Displays: Kindles and Cuttlefish: Biomimetics Informs e-paper Displays

Electronic Paper Displays: Kindles and Cuttlefish: Biomimetics Informs e-paper Displays | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

Both electronic paper (e-paper) and certain biological organisms share the need for adaptive, reflective surfaces to communicate information. The goal of each is to use numerous colors, textures, polarization, and contrast variations without optical losses in order to maximize and control (in an energy-efficient way) the desired physical appearance. Recognizing these display commonalities, researchers at the University of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, OH), the USA Marine Biological Laboratory (Woods Hole, MA), the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright Patterson Air Force Base (Dayton, OH), and the Army Research Laboratory (Adelphi, MD) are attempting to merge the knowledge base of biomimetics used for biological adaptive coloration and appearance (with a focus on cephalopods such as squid, cuttlefish, and octopus) and synthetic reflective e-paper displays (such as Amazon’s Kindle and the Sony Reader) using a series of scientific metrics

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Moth-inspired Anti-reflective Plastics to be Commercialized

Moth-inspired Anti-reflective Plastics to be Commercialized | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Researchers from A*STAR’s IMRE and their commercial partners used nanoimprint technology to produce new anti-reflective and anti-glare plastics.
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