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Engineering Materials

Body Armor Is Inspired by Shrimp

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Rob Spiegel
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Re: Biomimetic Structures
Rob Spiegel   6/21/2012 4:58:53 PM
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Ann, I love these stories of yours about taking nature's technology and applying it to human needs. I would guess this is just the beginning.

gsmith120
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Re: Biomimetic Structures
gsmith120   6/21/2012 6:02:38 PM
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I agree Rob...Ann I too enjoy your articles.  It is very interesting to read about how someone can look at something as simple as a shrimp, crab, snake or the like and develop unique and innovative things.  That's a very interesting looking and colorful shrimp Ann I too enjoy your artilces.  It is very interesting to read about how someone can look at something as simple as a shrimp, crab, snake or the like and develop unique and novative things. 

Charles Murray
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Re: Biomimetic Structures
Charles Murray   6/21/2012 8:05:10 PM
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I agree, Rob. Great article. I wonder if the reserachers used finite element analysis to study this.

ChasChas
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self healing
ChasChas   6/22/2012 11:42:52 AM
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Are there self-healing properties that add to the life span of these clubs? Structure alone may not be the whole story.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Biomimetic Structures
Ann R. Thryft   6/22/2012 12:03:33 PM
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Thanks for the positive feedback, folks. I was taught that creativity starts with, and is fed by, seeing things in unusual ways. I think that the engineers that look at a shrimp with incredibly strong clubby arms and come up with an idea for a new composite material are creative people who might solve a particular problem faster and cheaper than other methods. Nature has been at this an incredibly longer time than we have: about 3.5 billion years. I think reporting on biomimetics can provide inspiration for working engineers, whether they're designing materials or using them.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: self healing
Ann R. Thryft   6/22/2012 12:08:59 PM
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ChasChas, great question. Since the material is organic, and considering the incredible stresses it undergoes during the shrimp's lifetime, that's certainly a possibility.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Biomimetic Structures
Rob Spiegel   6/22/2012 1:39:11 PM
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Good point about creativity, Ann. Even the pharmaceutical industry is looking to nature for solutions. I attended a Chile Institute conference and there were pharma researchers attending. They were looking into the pain-killing qualities of the hot chemical in peppers.

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