Latest research reveals why geckos are the largest animals able to scale smooth vertical walls – even larger climbers would require unmanageably large sticky footpads. Scientists estimate that a human would need adhesive pads covering 40% of their body surface in order to walk up a wall like Spider-Man, and believe their insights have implications for the feasibility of large-scale, gecko-like adhesives.
New research indicates that cockroaches use a combination of fast and slow twitch muscle fibres to give their mandibles a “force boost” that allows them to chew through tough materials.
Close-up film shows for the first time how ants use ‘combs’ and ‘brushes’ to keep their antennae clean27 Jul 2015
Using unique mechanical experiments and close-up video, Cambridge researchers have shown how ants use microscopic ‘combs’ and ‘brushes’ to keep their antennae clean, which could have applications for developing cleaners for nanotechnology.
High-speed videos reveal that, unlike other jumping insects, the juvenile praying mantis does not spin out of control when airborne. In fact, it both creates and controls angular momentum at extraordinary speeds to orient its body for precise landings.
Molecular ‘fingerprint’ for tissue taken from first isotope-enriched mouse has huge potential for scientific breakthroughs, as well as improved medical implants. Earliest research based on data has already revealed that a molecule thought to exist for repairing DNA may also in fact trigger bone formation.
Previously believed to be only man-made, a natural example of a functioning gear mechanism has been discovered in a common insect - showing that evolution developed interlocking cogs long before we did.