All posts tagged Biomimicry

“Wet Glue”

 

This is not an unknown revelation … things break. Some of these broken things can be repaired if we can only stick them back together. The first item many of us turn to for repairs is duct-tape or bailing-wire; however, if you try to put a vase, or fine china, back together using duct-tape, the results are far from satisfactory – and a wire repair on such items is preposterous. So our next option for restoration is some type of glue product. Two of the most versatile glues I have found are superglue and epoxy, both working well on many types of materials. Yet even superglues and epoxies have their limits, especially when it comes to bonding materials in wet conditions.

MusselsSo how do you make better “wet glue”? Scientists have turned to one of God’s created creatures to study and develop glues that stick together underwater … they are observing the mussel.

“Mussels manufacture their glue under water, yet the glue can withstand the force of a thousand pounds per square inch. Mussel glue will even stick to Teflon! The mussel begins by making the glue in two parts, each part made by a separate gland. One gland produces proteins that are like resin. The other gland makes the hardeners. When these are mixed, they harden into a strand in only a couple of minutes. The mussel will make many of these strands as it fastens itself to a rock. As more of these strands are made, they begin to cross-link with one another, greatly adding to the strength of the bond. The mussel makes between five and ten different kinds of protein strands, carefully limiting the cross-linking to produce the greatest strength. Without this mix, the bond would be brittle and easily break.” (taken from the article “True Superglue” on the Creation Moments website.)

Scientists and engineers continue to find better and new ways to solve problems when they carefully study the design already established in God’s creation.

 

Lanny Johnson

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Bacteria Shredding Insect Wings

Bacteria Shredding Article

Some interesting research published a few days ago holds a huge promise for reducing incidences of bacterial infection. Wings of dragonflies and the Cicadae are constructed with ultra-microscopic-sized (nano) spires which literally shred bacteria. To read about this go to: Germ-killing nanosurface opens new front in hygiene.

I always like to say that God has given us a vast array of things in nature for us to glean from in order to “invent” amazing technology that will help us mortal humans. That is exactly what is happening with this new discovery. Material emulating these insect’s technology is smooth to the touch and, if placed on door handles, will shred bacteria left from people’s hands.

Dragonfly

Dragonfly Image: Wikipedia Commons

Is it really logical to believe that this insect technology, or myriads of other technologies, we glean from in nature could have happened by accidents of evolution? They appear to be the product of our amazing Creator.

 

Dave Nutting

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3-D Brain

 

Brain 3DMy first recollection of 3-D technology was as a kid going to the 3-D movies, where we were handed a pair of cheap, cardboard colored glasses, with one red lens made of a flimsy plastic material, and the other lens of blue plastic. It wasn’t very exciting, but with a little imagination you thought you were seeing in three-dimensions. I understand the 3-D movies today are a vast improvement over the movies of old.

Today we know that brain cells communicate with each other through connections which reach out in three dimensions. The speed at which cells communicate with each other has been shown to be very rapid, even while we sleep.

Until recently, the “thinking” parts of a computer have only been able to communicate using two dimensional flat chips. Scientists felt computers could be greatly enhanced if they could develop a three-dimensional computer chip that mimicked the wiring of the brain.

The first 3-D chip arrangement was in cell phones, however these are just individual flat chips stacked on top of each other. Researchers have recently developed true three-dimensional chips (called TSVs). These TSVs are more efficient than flat chips – they pack more “thinking” power into a smaller space, work faster, and use less power. Chip manufacturers are working on methods to mass produce TSVs.

Scientists understand that mimicking the 3-D wiring of the brain greatly improves computer technology (at least in the area of calculation), but they also understand that they are nowhere close to mimicking the total power of the brain… a brain that points to the creative genius of a Creator!

 

Lanny Johnson

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Copying to Prevent ‘Copying’

 

Blue Morpho Butterfly wing - reflected lightHow do you prevent counterfeiters from copying money, drugs, designer clothes and accessories, etc.? Some engineers are turning to the amazing wing of the South American Blue Morpho butterfly for a solution.

The Blue Morpho’s brilliant wing color isn’t due to pigment. Instead of pigments, the butterfly’s wings have complicated scales with very tiny holes that reflect different colors or wavelengths, producing iridescent, shining blue and greens.

The Nanotech Security Corp., in Vancouver, Canada, has copied the design of the Blue Morpho butterfly.  Using a new technology called nano*-optics, they have developed a method to produce nano-holes in silicon or quartz. The process takes from a few hours to a couple of days to produce a master pattern (image), after which a second process grows the image on nickel. From there it can be embossed to any material.1

Blue Morpho Butterfly wing - microribs“The entire image could be large enough to be seen from a distance, and, if embossed on high-priced items like designer handbags, would make it easy to spot the phonies,” said Doug Blakeway, Nanotech’s CEO.2

Because the image would be very difficult to reverse engineer, and expensive because of the equipment needed, it has been stated that the process is ‘unlikely’ to be counterfeited. Hmmm – that has been said about many types of security … time will tell.

This type of work is yet another example of biomimicry – adapting God’s creations for advanced human technologies.

 

*Based on the scale of nanometers – one nanometer is hundreds of times smaller than even the tiniest bacterial cell.

1 Butterflies Inspire Anti-Counterfeit Technology, Inside Science, Joel N. Shurkin, 6/19/13

2Ibid.

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your partnership.

Box-Like Aerodynamic Car

The Bionic Car

When I first saw a picture of the Mercedes-Benz bionic concept vehicle, I had to laugh. In my view, it was quite comical, as far as cars go. All humor aside though, the boxy, rectangular body of the Bionic Car is a very efficient design.

As it turns out, the engineers at Mercedes-Benz were looking for a new aerodynamic design in a car. They found their inspiration in the tropical boxfish (Ostracion Cubicus) that lives in warm ocean waters. Although the rather large body of the boxfish appears to be cumbersome, it is able to swim very fast because of its low coefficient of drag and rigid exoskeleton.

The BoxfishBy modeling their concept car from the overall shape of the boxfish, the engineers designed a vehicle that had one of the lowest co-efficient of drag ever tested.

The 2005 model of the Bionic Car was able to reach a top speed of 118 miles per hour, while getting an astounding 70 miles per gallon fuel economy. Not only does the aerodynamic shape give the car a highly efficient fuel performance, its rectangular frame adds stability.

Once again, through biomimicry, engineers have examined God’s creation and applied what they have learned to make efficient products we can use.

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing.  Thanks for your partnership.