19,196 research outputs found

    Biomimetics Learning from Nature

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    Synovial joint lubrication – does nature teach more effective engineering lubrication strategies?

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    Nature shows numerous examples of systems which show energy efficiency, elegance in their design and optimum use of materials. Biomimetics is an emerging field of research in engineering and successes have been documented in the diverse fields of robotics, mechanics, materials engineering and many more. To date little biomimetics research has been directed towards tribology in terms of transferring technologies from biological systems into engineering applications. The potential for biomimicry has been recognised in terms of replicating natural lubricants but this system reviews the potential for mimicking the synovial joint as an efficient and durable tribological system for potential engineering systems. The use of materials and the integration of materials technology and fluid/surface interactions are central to the discussion

    Biomimetics

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    Size Control and Fluorescence Labeling of Polydopamine Melanin-Mimetic Nanoparticles for Intracellular Imaging.

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    As synthetic analogs of the natural pigment melanin, polydopamine nanoparticles (NPs) are under active investigation as non-toxic anticancer photothermal agents and as free radical scavenging therapeutics. By analogy to the widely adopted polydopamine coatings, polydopamine NPs offer the potential for facile aqueous synthesis and incorporation of (bio)functional groups under mild temperature and pH conditions. However, clear procedures for the convenient and reproducible control of critical NP properties such as particle diameter, surface charge, and loading with functional molecules have yet to be established. In this work, we have synthesized polydopamine-based melanin-mimetic nanoparticles (MMNPs) with finely controlled diameters spanning ≈25 to 120 nm and report on the pH-dependence of zeta potential, methodologies for PEGylation, and the incorporation of fluorescent organic molecules. A comprehensive suite of complementary techniques, including dynamic light scattering (DLS), cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), zeta-potential, ultraviolet-visible (UV-Vis) absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy, and confocal microscopy, was used to characterize the MMNPs and their properties. Our PEGylated MMNPs are highly stable in both phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) and in cell culture media and exhibit no cytotoxicity up to at least 100 μg mL-1 concentrations. We also show that a post-functionalization methodology for fluorophore loading is especially suitable for producing MMNPs with stable fluorescence and significantly narrower emission profiles than previous reports, suggesting they will be useful for multimodal cell imaging. Our results pave the way towards biomedical imaging and possibly drug delivery applications, as well as fundamental studies of MMNP size and surface chemistry dependent cellular interactions

    Design of a visually enhanced searchable database for exploration and application of biomimicry in interior design

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    Biomimetics in Design Biomimicry is an approach to design that extracts design inspiration and principles from natural systems and organisms. When effectively integrated into the design process, this approach can yield products and systems that offer a variety of potential economic and environmental benefits. The research presented here examines some strategies and methods that can assist designers with the successful incorporation of biomimetics into the design process. These include approaches to integrating biomimicry into the design process, strategies to improve the exploration and identification of biological sources of inspiration, and methods to assist with the productive application of biomimetics to design challenges. Additionally, an Excel based tool was also created to assist designers with the integration of biomimetics into the design process

    A note on the depth-from-defocus mechanism of jumping spiders

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    Jumping spiders are capable of estimating the distance to their prey relying only on the information from one of their main eyes. Recently, it has been shown that jumping spiders perform this estimation based on image defocus cues. In order to gain insight into the mechanisms involved in this blur-to-distance mapping as performed by the spider and to judge whether inspirations can be drawn from spider vision for depth-from-defocus computer vision algorithms, we constructed a three-dimensional (3D) model of the anterior median eye of the Metaphidippus aeneolus, a well studied species of jumping spider. We were able to study images of the environment as the spider would see them and to measure the performances of a well known depth-from-defocus algorithm on this dataset. We found that the algorithm performs best when using images that are averaged over the considerable thickness of the spider's receptor layers, thus pointing towards a possible functional role of the receptor thickness for the spider's depth estimation capabilities

    The application of BIM tools to explore the dynamic characteristics of smart materials in a contemporary Shanashil building design element

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    Traditional architecture is known for its crafted facade features that respond to environmental, social and cultural requirements. Contemporary architecture produced façade features that attempted to enhance local design identity and local culture. Despite the advantages of modern technology, architectural elements have difficulties in fulfilling the idea of sustainable elegance that once traditional elements provided. This problem calls for an interdisciplinary design approach to deliver sustainable design solutions that positively adapt to the surrounding environment as well as maintain the state of elegance in design. With this in mind, the research aims to explore the role of new glass technologies to improve the performance and at the same time maintain the design value of traditional façade element “shanashil” in Baghdadi buildings. This research utilises BIM tools and uses smart materials to restore the lost value in design, which mimics the dynamic characteristics observed in nature, inspired by biomimetics strategies. Such qualities are found in the characteristics of smart dynamic glazing material particularly in the switchable, reversible properties of transparency and coloration efficiency. The material characteristics are attached to a 3D digital prototype to visualise the difference between dynamic and static properties through the use of technology tools Revit plugin and smart glazing virtual reality prototype. This research concludes that the dynamic characteristics of smart glazing materials are effective in delivering a multifunctional design quality to collectively blend in harmony with the surrounding environment

    Fiber-optic breath sensors: A comparison study

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    The paper presents a comparative study of three fiber optic sensors based on the fiber Bragg grating (FBG). The basic monitored parameter is the respiratory rate of the human body. Fiber-optic sensors are immune to electromagnetic interference (EMI). This fact singles them out as ideal for use in magnetic resonance environments (typically in MRI -magnetic resonance imaging) as a prediction of hyperventilation states in patients. These patient conditions arise as a result of the closed tunnel environment in MR scanners. The results (10 volunteers with written consent) were compared with the results using the conventional respiratory belt (RB) in a laboratory environment and processed using the objective Bland-Altman (B-A) method.Web of Science40635
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