Biomimicry
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Bees no Drones When it Comes to Landing

Bees no Drones When it Comes to Landing | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Australian neuroscientists studying bees' flight have uncovered a surprisingly simple guidance strategy which could be used by drones, stealth fighters and even spacecraft. Experiments at the Australian National University revealed that bees land safely by ensuring that the surface they are approaching expands at a constant rate within their field of vision."

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Black Butterfly Wings Provide Inspiration for Superior Solar Cells

Black Butterfly Wings Provide Inspiration for Superior Solar Cells | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Researchers recently took cues from butterflies to design thin film solar cells that can better absorb light. The rose butterfly, common to India, has soft black wings that keep the insect warm with the sun’s heat. Mimicking the design of the butterfly’s wings, the scientists created a solar cell that The Verge reports can gather light twice as efficiently.
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Scientists Made Robotic Bees to One Day Study The Ocean

Scientists Made Robotic Bees to One Day Study The Ocean | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"What’s better than a robot inspired by bees? A robot inspired by bees that can swim.Researchers led by a team at Harvard University have developed a tiny, 175-milligram (about two feathers) device with insect-inspired wings that can both flap and rotate, allowing it to either fly above the ground or swim in shallow waters and easily transition between the two."

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A Supercomputer Dreams Up a Bird-Like Airplane Wing

A Supercomputer Dreams Up a Bird-Like Airplane Wing | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"[...] a team of Danish researchers has designed a surprisingly “organic” model for the inside of an airplane wing by harnessing the immense computing power of 8,000 CPUs. In a letter published in Nature, Niels Aage and colleagues from the University of Denmark showed off an intricately curved and fractal-like airfoil design that’s strikingly similar to the interior of a bird’s wing and beak."

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Mimicking Nature's Cellular Architectures Via 3-D Printing

Mimicking Nature's Cellular Architectures Via 3-D Printing | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being compressed. The plant's hardiness comes from a combination of its hollow, tubular macrostructure and porous microstructure. These architectural features work together to give grass its robust mechanical properties. Inspired by natural cellular structures, researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, and MIT have developed a new method to 3D print materials with independently tunable macro-and microscale porosity using a ceramic foam ink."

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Boeing, NASA Look to Flying Geese in Chase for Jet-Fuel Savings

Boeing, NASA Look to Flying Geese in Chase for Jet-Fuel Savings | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Boeing Co. and NASA have found an inexpensive way to cut airline fuel bills by borrowing a trick from the world’s greatest long-distance aviators: migratory birds. By lining up cruising aircraft in a V-shaped formation favored by Canada geese, carriers would be able to produce a leap in efficiency without investing in structural makeovers or futuristic technology. The idea is to link the flying convoys safely using navigation and collision-avoidance tools that already are widely installed in cockpits."

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‘Organismoid’ Device Replicates Human Thought Processes

‘Organismoid’ Device Replicates Human Thought Processes | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Researchers at Purdue University, West Lafayette, have developed a new technology called “organismoids”, devices created from a ceramic material that mirror animal memory by learning to forget unimportant memories while retaining important ones.
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One Big Step Closer to Synthetic Spider Silk

One Big Step Closer to Synthetic Spider Silk | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
"Spider silk properties continue to amaze and astound, the more we learn. They are lightweight, and yet one of the toughest natural materials. They are virtually invisible to the human immune system, making spider silk a natural material for medical uses. Mankind already puts the magical threads to use, in applications as varied as weaving a golden cloak from natural spider silk to making dissolving tennis shoes out of a material invented while trying to mimic spider silk. But it could get much better. Scientists at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania have sequenced the entire genome of the golden orb spider, one of the most productive of all spiders."
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Bee Brains Could Help Your Camera Take Better Photos

Bee Brains Could Help Your Camera Take Better Photos | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"New research on how bees perceive colour could be put to good use in our digital cameras, meaning photos shot by drones or phones would look more natural than ever. It's all to do with colour constancy, the way that bees (and humans) can tell a flower is red no matter what the colour or quality of the light – a mental trick that the digital cameras of today really struggle with."

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Flying Fish Give Clues to 'Tandem Wing' Airplane Design

Flying Fish Give Clues to 'Tandem Wing' Airplane Design | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Ribbon halfbeak are a species of fish with the ability to fly above the sea surface - but unlike true 'flying fish', they lack the necessary hind wing fins. So how do they fly? Dr Yoshinobu Inada from Tokai University, Japan says, "Investigating the design of ribbon halfbeak could provide useful information for the optimal design of tandem wing airplanes."

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Antireflection with Moth Eye Structures

Antireflection with Moth Eye Structures | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Screens on even the newest phones and tablets can be hard to read outside in bright sunlight. Inspired by the nano­structures found on moth eyes, researchers led by Shin-Tson Wu of the Uni­versity of Central Florida have developed a new anti­reflection film that could keep people from having to run to the shade to look at their mobile devices. The anti­reflection film exhibits a surface reflec­tion of just 0.23 percent, much lower than the surface reflection of usual phones of 4.4 percent.
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Curvature Could Give Fish Fins Their Strength

Curvature Could Give Fish Fins Their Strength | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Using a mathematical model and the mackerel pectoral fin as an illustrative example, [...] researchers show how fin stiffness may be changed by applying a u-shaped curvature at the fin's base. The effect, the researchers say, might underlie the ability of fish to swim at widely varying speeds in all kinds of currents with great maneuverability. [...] The researchers say their model suggests intriguing possibilities for the design of robotic swimmers."

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Biomimicry with Artificial Structural Colors

Biomimicry with Artificial Structural Colors | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Bright colors in the natural world often result from tiny structures in feathers or wings that change the way light behaves when it’s reflected. This structural color is respon­sible for the vivid hues of birds and butter­flies. Arti­ficially harnessing this effect could allow us to engineer new materials for appli­cations such as solar cells and chame­leon-like adap­tive camou­flage. Inspired by the deep blue colora­tion of a native North American bird, Stellar’s jay, a team at Nagoya Uni­versity reproduced the color in their lab, giving rise to a new type of arti­ficial pigment. “The Stellar’s jay’s feathers provide an excellent example of angle-inde­pendent structural color,” says Yukikazu Takeoka, “This color is enhanced by dark materials, which in this case can be attri­buted to black melanin particles in the feathers.”

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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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Scallops use 200 Eyes Made of Mirrors in Order to See

Scallops use 200 Eyes Made of Mirrors in Order to See | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Scallops, hardly the most complex of creatures, have intricate eyes that work like telescopes, say researchers. They hope this discovery can one day help us make our own telescopes more powerful.
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Proposed NASA Mission Employs “Lobster-Eye” Optics

Proposed NASA Mission Employs “Lobster-Eye” Optics | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"A novel optics system that mimics the structure of a lobster’s eyes would enable a conceptual Explorer-class mission to precisely locate, characterize, and alert other observatories to the source of gravitational waves, which are caused by some of the most powerful events in the universe. [...] the WFI, is equipped with the novel lobster-eye optics, which mimic the structure of the crustacean’s eyes. Lobster eyes are made up of long, narrow cells that each reflect a tiny amount of light from a given direction. This allows the light from a wide viewing area to be focused into a single image."

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Insect Eyes Inspire Structure of New Solar Panel Cell

Insect Eyes Inspire Structure of New Solar Panel Cell | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
Scientists at the USA’s Stanford University have looked at the eyes of insects to create the newest form of solar cells. They have discovered that packing tiny solar cells together could pave the way for a new generation of advanced photovoltaics.
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Remora Robot Able to Adhere Quickly and Strongly to Underwater Objects

Remora Robot Able to Adhere Quickly and Strongly to Underwater Objects | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
A team of researchers from China and the U.S. has created a robot that is able to mimic a remora fish by adhering quickly and strongly to underwater objects.
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Stormwater Management: Lessons from Our Forests

Stormwater Management: Lessons from Our Forests | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"[...]Earth’s biosphere has about 3.8 billion years of design experience at managing its rainfall. Compared with the typically impervious urban environment, where about 80 percent of rainfall becomes runoff, in a healthy Northwest forest, just 0.2 percent of rainfall does.

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Cicada Wings May Inspire New Water-Repellent Surface Materials

Cicada Wings May Inspire New Water-Repellent Surface Materials | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Researchers are looking to insects – specifically cicadas – for insight into the design of artificial surfaces with de-icing, self-cleaning and anti-fogging abilities. Their wings allow cicadas to fly, of course, but they also are good at repelling water – a condition that humans can appreciate, too."

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Plastics Made Fireproof Thanks to Mother-of-Pearl Mimic

Plastics Made Fireproof Thanks to Mother-of-Pearl Mimic | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"It’s a technicolour dreamcoat for your crisp packet – a strong, flame-retardant and airtight new material that mimics mother of pearl. The natural version, also called nacre, is found on the inner shell of some molluscs, where it is built up of layers of the mineral aragonite separated by organic polymers such as chitin. It is remarkably strong, without being brittle or dense. We would like to use nacre and similar materials as a protective coating in many situations."

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Visionary Biomimicry: Five Insects Inspiring Cutting-edge Technology

Visionary Biomimicry: Five Insects Inspiring Cutting-edge Technology | Biomimicry | Scoop.it
One area where biomimicry is yielding fascinating results is in the field of optics and machine vision. While our cameras and ways of thinking about sight have largely been informed by the human visual system, cutting-edge research is looking to insects to find new tricks for everything from depth perception to colour analysis.
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Bamboo Biomimicry

The spatial distribution of fibers in hollow bamboo cylinders is optimized to reinforce flexural rigidity, a new finding that sheds light on biomimetic approaches in the development of materials.
Light and tough, bamboo is widely used as a natural, functional material in Japan and other Asian countries. Bamboo is light because of its hollow structure, which allows the plant to grow faster with small amounts of woody parts and expose itself to sunlight above other trees.
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BMW to Use Pomelo Fruit to Protect its Workers

BMW to Use Pomelo Fruit to Protect its Workers | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"The pomelo is a large citrus fruit, somewhat like a grapefruit, and the structure of its thick rind provides great impact protection when the fruit falls off the tree. BMW, along with a group of German companies and universities, have taken inspiration from nature’s design for new protective gear as part of the Bio-Inspired Safety Systems project. The pomelo’s rind is especially good at impact absorption because it is an auxetic material. This means that when the stuff stretches the substance becomes thicker."

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Ladybird’s Hi-Tech Folding Wings Inspire Solar Array Paddles and Foldable Wings

Ladybird’s Hi-Tech Folding Wings Inspire Solar Array Paddles and Foldable Wings | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

Kazuya Saito (University of Tokyo) and colleagues used high-speed video to watch a ladybird fold its wings. “They found that prominent veins along the edge of the wings allow creases to form and fold the wings away in a complex, origami-like shape. A bend in the wing can drift down a vein as it gets folded, but the wing is ready to spring back to a rigid form when the elytra [i.e. wing cases] open”, New Scientist explains. The wing frames do not have any joints. The NS article also suggests a biomimicry dimension. This “folding mechanism could help us build solar array paddles that unfold themselves in space, foldable wings for small vehicles, or even lead to better umbrellas.”

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Scientists Develop a Novel Algorithm Inspired by Bee Colonies to Help Dismantling Criminal Social Networks

Scientists Develop a Novel Algorithm Inspired by Bee Colonies to Help Dismantling Criminal Social Networks | Biomimicry | Scoop.it

"Researchers from the University of Granada (UGR) have designed an algorithm, inspired by the intelligent and social behavior of bee colonies, which allows law enforcement to attack and dismantle any type of social network that poses a threat, whether physical or virtual, such as social networks linked to organized crime and jihadist terrorism."

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