Law enforcement faces the challenge of stopping fleeing vehicles. Non-violent methods include roadblocks and spike strips laid across the pavement. However, neither is entirely successful because drivers sometimes avoid the barriers.
The U.S. Department of Home Security is studying new technologies for stopping vehicles. One promising device is inspired by the squid.
Continue reading Squid – Arresting device →
Chameleons display many design features including changing skin color and stereoscopic eyesight. Another feature is their ability to capture insects with an extended tongue. Upon sighting fresh prey, the chameleon quickly extends its tongue to twice its body length. The tongue moves outward at ten meters per second (33 ft/sec). Once released, the tongue is in free flight and unguided, so it must be launched with precision. In addition, the tongue must exert very little force to make a sticky capture without pushing the target insect away.
Continue reading mimic the chameleons tongue will offer new robot arms →
Lizards are some of the most versatile animals on the planet. Geckoes for example can climb straight up walls, even across glass ceilings upside down. Their feet have been studied to learn how to make better adhesives. Now, lizards are the subject of a new investigation which includes the dinosaurs. Researchers are looking at how lizards use their tails for balance, resulting in similar mechanical “tails” for robots.
Continue reading lizard tail for stabilizers →
Many trees do not have vertical capillary tubes for transporting water upward. Instead, a spiral network of capillaries and fibers extend the entire length of the tree. This helical geometry strengthens the tree, allowing a greater flexibility or bending motion in high wind or during heavy weight loads. The spiral pattern is sometimes noticed on the surface of dead trees which have lost their bark.
less material useage
Continue reading The design of trees helps to reduce plastic waste →
We are all familiar with table salt, or sodium chloride (NaCl). This essential, common compound is ordinarily crystalline and brittle in nature. However, many materials behave strangely on the scale of minute quantities, and salt is no exception. Researchers at Boston College have explored tiny salt samples at close distance using an atomic force microscope.
high speed data transfer
Continue reading Salt-Nano wire for high speed data transfer →
Tensairity® is a revolutionary light weight beam element developed by Airlight Ldt. The synergetic combination of an airbeam, cables and struts leads to this extraordinary light weight structure, using very low internal pressure but with the load bearing capacity of conventional steel girders.
huge constructions over long distances
Continue reading use liana or an air-beam to conquer long distances →
The Euplectella aspergillum is a cylindrical sponge that lives intropical waters. It has a height of 45 cm. Its exoskeleton consists of hydrated, amorphous silicon dioxide organized into a complexnetwork of spicules that supports the structure. These fibres, whichare 5-10 cm long and as thin as a hair form a crown at the foot ofthe network that anchors the sponge to the bottom of the ocean.
Continue reading Building based on mechanical stiffness of sea-sponges →