When Nature Inspires Technology

By Karan Pillai

January 8, 2023


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It is the practice of designing and creating products, processes, and systems inspired by nature. For example, the needle of a syringe is inspired by the stingers of insects like bees and mosquitoes. Read on for more examples.

What is Biomimicry?

Sycamore trees could be a source of inspiration for biomimicry in a number of ways. For example, the structure of its leaves and branches could be used as a model for designing efficient wind turbines.


Image source: Pexels

Geckos' feet have inspired the design of robots that can climb vertical surfaces.


Image source: Pexels

The structure of a leaf has inspired the design of solar cells that are more efficient at capturing sunlight. Some solar cells are also designed to absorb a wider range of wavelengths, allowing them to convert more sunlight into electricity.


Image source: Pexels

Engineers have studied the flight of birds and insects to design drones that are able to fly using flapping wings rather than traditional propellers.


Image source: Pexels

The way certain animals like meerkats (in pic) can burrow through the soil has inspired the design of robots that can do the same. They have a variety of potential applications, including in search and rescue operations and soil analysis.


Image source: Pexels

The surface of lotus leaves has inspired the development of coatings that repel water, which have a variety of applications, including self-cleaning surfaces and water-resistant clothing


Image source: Pexels

Engineers have studied the aerodynamics of birds to design more efficient aircraft.


Image source: Pexels

Image source: Wikimedia

This popular hook-and-loop fastening mechanism was inspired by how  burrs (in pic) stick to animals' fur.


Image source: Pexels

This surface pattern is inspired by shark skin and has been shown to inhibit the growth of bacteria. It has been applied to hospital surfaces to help reduce the spread of infections.