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“ Biomimetics ” Inventions that Mimic Nature. “Life has already solved the challenges that we're trying to solve, t here are literally as many ideas as there are organisms." - Janine Benyus. Biomimetics. Definition- “When humans use nature to solve an engineering problem”.

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biomimetics inventions that mimic nature

“Biomimetics” Inventions that Mimic Nature

“Life has already solved the challenges that we're trying to solve, there are literally as many ideas as there are organisms." - Janine Benyus

biomimetics
Biomimetics
  • Definition- “When humans use nature to solve an engineering problem”.
slide3

Innovators used ultra-fast lasers to copy the microscopic properties of the surface of a lotus leaf, below, to achieve a self-cleaning, water-repellent surface, right.

slide4

The water rolls off, taking the contaminates with it.

  • Lots of researchers are working on it, and General Electric's Global Research Center is busy developing coatings for commercial application right now.
  • Ex. Problem: De-icing planes before take off
slide5

The intricate wiring of the whale's heart is being studied as a model for a device called a nanoscaleatrioventricular bridge.

  • This could replace pacemakers for millions of people.
velcro
Velcro
  • Invented in 1941 by Swiss engineer George de Mestral.
  • Hetook the idea from the burrs that stuck to his dog's hair. Under the microscope he noted the tiny hooks on the end of the burr's spines.
  • Coolest application: Championship Velcro Jumping, first made popular in 1984 by David Letterman.
locust swarms
Locust Swarms
  • Ford and Volvo designed anti collision systems after observing locusts that gather into one area without colliding.
bionic car
Bionic Car
  • The concept of aerodynamic automobiles came from the boxfish, whose base, movement and bone structure were copied in their design.
slide11

DaimlerChrysler has developed theBionic Car.

  • Using the shape of the box fish, designers achieved 20% less fuel consumption and as much as an 80% reduction in nitrogen oxide emissions.
  • The diesel-powered compact will get about 70 miles per gallon.
passive cooling
Passive Cooling
  • A high rise in Zimbabwe was designed to mimic the way that tower-building termites in Africa construct their mounds to maintain a constant temperature.
  • The insects do this by constantly opening and closing vents throughout the mound to manage currents of air - cooler air is drawn in from open lower sections while hot air escapes through chimneys.
friction reducing sharkskin
Friction-Reducing Sharkskin

One of the best ways to reduce reliance on fossil fuels is to achieve more efficient use of the energy we do consume. Inspired by the evolved ability of shark's skin to reduce drag by manipulating the boundary layer flow as the fish swims, researchers are developing coatings for ship's hulls, submarines, aircraft fuselage, and even swimwear for humans. Based on the varying shape and texture of shark's skin over its body, Speedo's Fastskin FSII swimsuits made their appearance at the Bejing Olympics and may have helped US swimmer Michael Phelps to his record eight gold medals in that competition, and the rest of the team as well.

gecko tape
Gecko Tape
  • Ever wanted to walk up walls or across ceilings? Gecko Tape may be the way to do it. The tape is a material covered with nanoscopic hairs that mimic those found on the feet of gecko lizards. These millions of tiny, flexible hairs exert van der Waals forces that provide a powerful adhesive effect. Applications include underwater and space station uses, so researchers from a number of institutions are working hard.
butterfly inspired displays
Butterfly Inspired Displays

By mimicking the way light reflects from the scales on a butterfly's wings, the Qualcomm company has developed Mirasol Displays that make use of the reflected light principle.

Paint is also being looked at as a new product using this butterfly reflective design.

slide19

For mobility, insect-like ability to cover varied terrain, climb surfaces and provide stability seems to work better.

  • Insect eyes offer greater resolution and panoramic range for exploring places people cannot go, and the ability to quickly adapt to changing environments (or even to spy on enemies undetected) make those toy insect robots a forerunner for future applications in exploration and defense.
points to ponder
Points to Ponder
  • What can we learn from these masterpieces of nature?
  • What secrets do they hold that can help us build a better world for ourselves and for them, (for animals and people)?