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Researcher’s Inventions Inspired by Nature

An Ohio State University professor is finding the inspiration for new inventions by studying the unique qualities of waterproof aquatic leaves, gecko feet and shark’s skin.

The study, known as biomimetrics, creates artificial structures in the laboratory by mimicking unique qualities of plant and animal life.

According to a recent research post, Bharat Bhushan, professor of mechanical engineering, is currently studying an invasive Brazilian weed that proliferates and clogs waterways. The oddly shaped hairs of Salvinia that trap air and reduce friction helping the plant float may someday provide a high-tech waterproof coating for marine vessels.

Bhushan has also studied aquatic lotus leaves that have the unique ability to repel water and dirt, and may provide the characteristics for an industrial coating for self-cleaning surfaces. Next up? Bhushan is studying sharkskin. Read more.

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