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Sea shells inspired a new material made of chalk and polystyrene

By Damir Beciri
One Comment11 March 2010

seashellsA team of materials scientists and chemists from The University of Manchester and The University of Leeds have taken inspiration from sea shells found on the beach to create a composite material from dissimilar ‘ingredients’. They have successfully reinforced calcium carbonate, or chalk, with polystyrene particles that are used to make drinks cups. They report… »

Bionics| Tech»

Mussel biomimicry could lead to new super-strong polymers

By Damir Beciri
5 March 2010

musselsWe may like to eat mussels steamed in white wine, but we also like to find mussels at the beach. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces and collaborators at the University of California at Santa Barbara and the University of Chicago believe they have uncovered the basis how marine mussels use… »

Bionics| Tech»

Spider hairs biomimicry for hydrophobic surfaces

By Damir Beciri
28 February 2010

spider-hairs-biomimicryAlthough we already wrote about lotus biomimicry for water-repelling surfaces, in this article we’re going to write about a surface with similar properties. Engineering researchers have created what they say is a “nearly perfect hydrophobic interface” by mimicking spiders. By using plastic to reproduce the shape and patterns of the minute hairs that grow on… »

Bionics| Robotics»

Biomimicry of fish lateral line for future robots and submarines

By Rob Aid
14 February 2010

fish-neuromastThe lateral line is a hydrodynamic imaging system found in fish and aquatic amphibians enables them to accomplish a variety of underwater activities such as localization of moving prey or predators, detection of stationary objects, schooling without colliding and social communication. It consists of numerous hair cell sensors called neuromasts which are distributed all over… »

Bionics| Robotics»

NASA and GM developed strong and dexterous Robonaut 2

By Damir Beciri
6 February 2010

nasa-robonaut-2-2Engineers and scientists from NASA and GM worked together through a Space Act Agreement at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston to build a new humanoid robot capable of working side by side with people. Using leading edge control, sensor and vision technologies, future robots could assist astronauts during hazardous space missions and help… »

Bionics| Tech»

Biomimicry of iron-plated snail could lead to better armor

By Damir Beciri
One Comment27 January 2010

tech-snail-shellTiny snails sitting on the ocean floor might seem defenseless against a large, determined predator such as a crab. But evolution has provided one species of sea snail with a unique iron-plated armored shell that resists such attacks. The snail has evolved a tri-layered shell structure consisting of an outer layer embedded with iron sulfide… »

Bionics| Robotics»

Lockheed Martin HULC robotic exoskeleton will operate longer

By Damir Beciri
One Comment22 January 2010

lockheed-martin-hulc-robotic-exoskeletonAfter writing about Japanese HAL-5 robotic exoskeleton, in this article we’re going to write about Human Universal Load Carrier (HULC) robotic exoskeleton. Developed by Lockheed Martin and Berkeley Bionics, the HULC robotic exoskeleton doesn’t boost the arm strength as some of the other robotic exoskeletons (including HAL-5) but it rather increases user’s capability to wear… »

Bionics| Robotics»

SCRATCHbot robot mimics rats and navigates with whiskers

By Damir Beciri
One Comment16 January 2010

scratchbotAfter their work on Whiskerbot, a group of researchers from the University of Sheffield and the Bristol Robotics Lab has created the SCRATCHBot (Spatial Cognition and Representation through Active TouCh), which uses its plastic whiskers in a sweeping back and forth motion to find its way round, much like a real rat. Many rodents have… »