Biomimetics Is All About Design Inspiration
Scientists wouldn’t rush to design things after nature’s examples if they weren’t well designed.
A steady stream of scientific papers and news articles shows that imitating nature (biomimetics) remains a scientific bonanza after years of breakthroughs. Here are a dozen recent examples of biological designs from a wide variety of organisms:
- Blowfly inspires mini-drone. (Live Science, Evolution News & Views)
- Human lungs inspire unbreakable security codes. (Science Daily)
- Photosynthesis inspires fuel cell. (PhysOrg)
- Oyster inspires windshields and military armor. (Science Magazine, Live Science)
- Biological muscle inspires engineered muscle. (PNAS, Medical Xpress)
- Mother-of-pearl inspires super-strong material. (Science Daily)
- Starling murmurations (Guideposts) inspire student’s octocopter drone. (PhysOrg)
- Flying snakes inspire gliding suits. (Live Science)
- Human brain inspires light-based computer chip. (Science Daily)
- Bombardier beetle inspires ATM cash safeguard. (PhysOrg)
- Hagfish slime inspires strong threads. (Science Daily)
- Moth eye inspires glare-proof coating on solar panels. (Science Daily)
The most common word in these articles is “inspire.” Have scientists ever been so inspired since they looked at an organism and found a workable design?
The biomimetics revolution is still hot. Get your precocious students into the movement. It will be the end of Darwinism, and the beginning of a new design-based way of thinking that will bring a cornucopia of benefits to the world.
Exercise: Which of these articles mentioned evolution? Was evolutionary theory relevant to the design work?