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BionicOpter Dragonfly Drone Flutters About, Blows Minds

BionicOpter Dragonfly Drone Flutters About, Blows Minds | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"After crafting a machine last year that soared around like a herring gull, now the company [Festo] has created BionicOpter. The 17.3-inch long dragonfly drone can flutter through the air in any direction, and even hover, just like its biological inspiration. Its four carbon fiber and foil wings beat up to 20 times per-second, propelling it through the air as if it were swimming rather than flying."

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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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Sharks Have Tough Skin Worthy of Biomimicry

Sharks Have Tough Skin Worthy of Biomimicry | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Sharks have tough skin that is worthy of biomimicry by nanotechnology designers and engineers. New coatings, textiles and other technologies that mimic the special biological properties of shark skin have been developed in recent years and many more such innovations are emerging across multiple industries."

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NBD Nano Aims its Bug-Inspired Tech at Big Industrial Markets

NBD Nano Aims its Bug-Inspired Tech at Big Industrial Markets | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Technology inspired by the exoskeleton of a hardy desert bug is being aimed at big industrial problems, and investors are betting several million dollars that it could make a difference."

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Conceptual Chair Inspired By 3D Printed Plant Cells

Conceptual Chair Inspired By 3D Printed Plant Cells | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"For her graduation project at the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague, industrial designer Lilian van Daal developed a concept 3D-printed soft chair called Biomimicry... [...] Van Daal looked for ways to create a soft chair from one type of material and retain the basic features required for the item to function as a chair. The chair needed to be firm and rigid in some areas and soft in other areas, and Van Daal experimented with various geometric structures to come up with a structure suitable for her design concept. The designer used nature as inspiration and studied the structure of plant cells – whose structural design allows them to perform different functions."

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Special Research Journal Issue on Biomimetic Drone Control

Special Research Journal Issue on Biomimetic Drone Control | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"The Journal of Bioinspiration and Biomimetics has a special issue on bioinspired drone control. Chock full of fascinating stuff, most of it free to read."

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Using Nature as a Model for Low-friction Bearings

Using Nature as a Model for Low-friction Bearings | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"The mechanical properties of natural joints are considered unrivalled. Cartilage is coated with a special polymer layer allowing joints to move virtually friction-free, even under high pressure. Using simulations on Jülich's supercomputers, scientists from Forschungszentrum Jülich and the University of Twente have developed a new process that technologically imitates biological lubrication and even improves it using two different types of polymers."

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Hummingbirds are the 'Jewels of the Jungle' Yet Their Iridescent Plumes are Pigment Free

Hummingbirds are the 'Jewels of the Jungle' Yet Their Iridescent Plumes are Pigment Free | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Beating its tiny wings up to 80 times a second a hummingbird will dart from flower to flower, its iridescent plumage dazzling in the tropical sun. But these busy birds are con artists. Their feathers are pigment-free, the colours the product of microscopic structures that refract sunlight like a prism, spraying out its reds, blues and greens."

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What Biomimicry Architects Can Learn From Scorpions

What Biomimicry Architects Can Learn From Scorpions | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Ben-Gurion University of the Negev scientists have poured molten aluminum into a scorpion burrow and discovered that scorpion burrows have a platform on which to warm up before the evening hunt."

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Moth Eyes Inspire More Efficient Photoelectrochemical Cells

Moth Eyes Inspire More Efficient Photoelectrochemical Cells | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"As nocturnal creatures, moths need to maximize how well they can see in the dark whilst remaining less visible to avoid predators. This ability to collect as much of the available light as possible and at the same time reflect as little as possible, has inspired Researchers at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) to design a new type of photoelectrochemical cell using relatively low cost materials."

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The Human Brain’s Remarkably Low Power Consumption, and How Computers Might Mimic its Efficiency

The Human Brain’s Remarkably Low Power Consumption, and How Computers Might Mimic its Efficiency | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
A new paper discusses the efficiency of neuronal computing and the ways in which we might better model the brain's function in future hardware. In some significant ways, we're clearly on the right track already.
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Inspired by Nature, Researchers Create Tougher Metal Materials

Inspired by Nature, Researchers Create Tougher Metal Materials | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Drawing inspiration from the structure of bones and bamboo, researchers have found that by gradually changing the internal structure of metals they can make stronger, tougher materials that can be customized for a wide variety of applications – from body armor to automobile parts."

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The Stickiness of Frog Tongues

The Stickiness of Frog Tongues | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
The frog looks nearly asleep, when suddenly its tongue darts out, snaring an unsuspecting insect. What makes its tongue so sticky? Find out...
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The Great Salmon Run Algorithm

The Great Salmon Run Algorithm | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Mechanical engineers at the Babol University of Technology in Mazandaran, Iran, have turned to nature to devise an algorithm based on the survival trials faced by salmon swimming upstream to the spawning grounds to help them fish out the optimal solution to a given problem.
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Healing Plastics And Reconnecting Circuitry. Biomimicry At It's Finest

Healing Plastics And Reconnecting Circuitry. Biomimicry At It's Finest | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"A fascinating new programme highlights how new materials are being manufactured that can actually heal themselves. From ByteSizeScience – “Our latest episode explores materials that mimic the human skin’s ability to heal scratches and cuts. For a first-hand look at self-healing plastics, we visited the lab of Nancy Sottos, Ph.D., professor of engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Inspired by human skin, the plastics repair themselves by “bleeding” healing agents when they are cut or scratched. This research offers the promise of cell phones, laptops, cars, and other products with self-repairing, longer-lasting surfaces.”"

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Camouflage Sheet Inspired by Octopus

Camouflage Sheet Inspired by Octopus | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Based on the camouflage abilities of octopuses and cuttlefish, engineers in the US have built a flexible material that changes colour to match its surroundings. The new design features a grid of 1mm cells, containing a temperature-driven dye that switches colour on demand."

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Bio-inspiration Transforming Cosmetics: Consumer Awareness Rising

Bio-inspiration Transforming Cosmetics: Consumer Awareness Rising | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Industry and consumer awareness of biomimetics is on the rise as demand for naturals continues to climb, with the combination of science and nature increasingly appealing for skin care products. 
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This Bio-Inspired Bike Jacket Flashes When Drivers Get Too Close

This Bio-Inspired Bike Jacket Flashes When Drivers Get Too Close | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"A designer has an idea of how to make drivers take more caution around cyclists: Help them see bikers as people, not obstacles. [...] The jacket uses sensors to tell if a car or bus is approaching, and then starts flashing LED lights. As cars get closer or drive faster, the lights flash more quickly. The design is inspired by animals that use visual signals to keep predators away."

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Mimicking the Super Hearing of a Cricket-Hunting Fly

Mimicking the Super Hearing of a Cricket-Hunting Fly | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Ormia ochracea is a little, yellow fly of the American south whose breeding strategy has an outsize ick factor. It deposits its larvae on the bodies of male crickets. The larvae then eat their way into their unwilling hosts, and devour them from the inside. What is most remarkable, though, is that the female fly locates the crickets by sound, homing in on the he-cricket’s stridulations (the chirping that results from the wings rubbing together) with uncanny accuracy. The cricket’s chirp is a smear of sound across the scale from the 5 kilohertz carrier frequency to around 20 kHz. And, as anybody who has tried to evict a passionate cricket from a tent or cabin knows, the sound is maddeningly hard to pinpoint.

With an auditory apparatus—let’s call them ears—only 1.5 millimeter across, ochracea pulls off a major feat of acoustic location; a number of engineering groups are working on devices to duplicate the fly’s sensitivity. Now, a team at the University of Texas at Austin has built a prototype replica of O. ochracea’s ear. Michael L. Kuntzman and Neal A. Hall, researchers in the school’s electrical and computer engineering department, describe the device and its performance in Applied Physics Letters."

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Quenching the World's Water and Energy Crises, One Tiny Droplet at a Time

Quenching the World's Water and Energy Crises, One Tiny Droplet at a Time | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"In the Namib Desert of Africa, the fog-filled morning wind carries the drinking water for a beetle called the Stenocara. iny droplets collect on the beetle's bumpy back. The areas between the bumps are covered in a waxy substance that makes them water-repellant, or hydrophobic (water-fearing). Water accumulates on the water-loving, or hydrophilic, bumps, forming droplets that eventually grow too big to stay put, then roll down the waxy surface. [...]  More than a decade ago, news of this creature's efficient water collection system inspired engineers to try and reproduce these surfaces in the lab. Small-scale advances in fluid physics, materials engineering and nanoscience since that time have brought them close to succeeding."




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Nature’s Strongest Super-Glue Comes Unstuck

Nature’s Strongest Super-Glue Comes Unstuck | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"An international team of scientists led by Newcastle University, UK, and funded by the US Office of Naval Research, have shown for the first time that barnacle larvae release an oily droplet to clear the water from surfaces before sticking down using a phosphoprotein adhesive."

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Using Fungi to Grow Packaging Material

Using Fungi to Grow Packaging Material | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Biology is influencing design and Biomimicry in packaging is a science that studies nature's models and then uses these designs and processes to solve human problems.
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Characterization of the Topography and Wettability of English Weed Leaves and Biomimetic Replicas

Characterization of the Topography and Wettability of English Weed Leaves and Biomimetic Replicas | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

In a recent paper published in Journal of Bionic Engineering, researchers from BERG-IBB studied the topography and wettability of the underside of English weed (Oxalis pes-caprae) leaves using epoxy replicas created via a two-step casting process. Leaves were found to be close to super hydrophobic due to the presence of a characteristic pattern of irregular 100 µm – 200 µm × 60 µm convex papillae. The water repellency properties of such microstructured surfaces may have important applications, including self-cleaning, anti-microbial and anti-fouling.

 

Photo details: SEM image of an epoxy replica of the leaf of English weed. P.M. Pereira, 2013.

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Carbon-fiber Epoxy Honeycombs Mimic the Material Performance of Balsa Wood

Carbon-fiber Epoxy Honeycombs Mimic the Material Performance of Balsa Wood | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Materials scientists at Harvard University have created lightweight cellular composites via 3D printing. These fiber-reinforced epoxy composites mimic the structure and performance of balsa wood. Because the fiber fillers align along the printing direction, their local orientation can be exquisitely controlled. These 3D composites may be useful for wind turbine, automotive and aerospace applications, where high stiffness- and strength-to-weight ratios are needed."

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Taking a Pounding: How Woodpeckers Avoid Concussions

Taking a Pounding: How Woodpeckers Avoid Concussions | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Woodpecker adaptations can inspire designs that prevent impact and vibration damage.
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University of Stuttgart Unveils Woven Pavilion Based on Beetle Shells

University of Stuttgart Unveils Woven Pavilion Based on Beetle Shells | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
A robotically woven carbon-fibre pavilion based on the lightweight shell encasing a beetle's wings and abdomen is revealed by the University of Stuttgart.
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