Year-End Biomimetics Parade

first_img(Visited 46 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 What better way to end the year than a celebration of biomimetics, where fun and useful science never ends thanks to nature’s inspiring designs?We start with a new story with seasonal holiday appeal.Rudolph’s antlers inspire next generation of unbreakable materials (Science Daily). What’s the secret behind the toughness of deer antlers? They have to be light yet strong, able to endure male contests without breaking. In order to design tough materials like that, scientists at Queen Mary University had to do some basic science.The team looked at the antler structure at the ‘nano-level’, which is incredibly small, almost one thousandth of the thickness of a hair strand, and were able to identify the mechanisms at work, using state-of-the-art computer modelling and x-ray techniques.First author Paolino De Falco from QMUL’s School of Engineering and Materials Science said: “The fibrils that make up the antler are staggered rather than in line with each other. This allows them to absorb the energy from the impact of a clash during a fight.”Moth’s eye inspires critical component on SOFIA’s newest instrument (Phys.org). Who would have thought a moth’s eye could inspire a sophisticated wide-view camera on a spacecraft that can gather details with more sensitivity than ever before? Read about it here. “The idea is simple. When examined close up, a moth’s eye contains a very fine array of small tapered cylindrical protuberances. Their job is to reduce reflection, allowing these nocturnal creatures to absorb as a much light as possible so that they can navigate even in the dark.” Great idea.Mimicking biological movements with soft robots (Science Daily). Getting robots to move “organically” the way the human body moves fingers and arms has been a challenge. The folks at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering “have developed a method to automatically design soft actuators based on the desired movement.” Save a step; mimicking nature “streamlines the process of designing soft robots that can perform complex movement.”Artificial leaf as mini-factory for drugs (Science Daily). “Inspired by the art of nature where leaves are able to collect enough sunlight to produce food,” engineers at Eindhoven University of Technology envision nano-factories where sunlight can be used to synthesize a variety of useful drugs. They need look no further than plants, where “nature is able to” gather and use energy that human engineers have heretofore found too weak to get done what they want.First movie of energy transfer in photosynthesis solves decades-old debate (Science Daily). Speaking of photosynthesis, a new advance in high-speed images captures the moment when a chloroplast transfers energy to the reaction center. “The whole process takes a matter of nanoseconds (billionths of a second), with the individual steps of energy transfer and charge separation taking only picoseconds (trillionths of a second).” Match that, engineers. “Can we mimic it or tune it to make artificial photosynthesis more efficient? These questions, and many others, can now be explored.” Read about it in the open-access paper in Nature Communications. Bio-inspired self-shaping ceramics (Nature Communications). Isn’t it neat how some plant seed pods can explode on contact, releasing their seeds over large distances? They do it with turgor pressure differences that build up inside the pod. Here’s what Swiss scientists are thinking:Shaping ceramics into complex and intricate geometries using cost-effective processes is desirable in many applications but still remains an open challenge. Inspired by plant seed dispersal units that self-fold on differential swelling, we demonstrate that self-shaping can be implemented in ceramics by programming the material’s microstructure to undergo local anisotropic shrinkage during heat treatment.Rice husk solar cells? (Nature Scientific Reports). Believe it or not, the seemingly useless debris from rice farming is finding a new use in solar power technology. “The morphology, structure and texture studies confirm the high surface area, abundant active sites and porous structure” that scientists in China are investigating for use in the production of solar cells. There’s a lot of rice in China. Think of the possibilities.Jumping water striders know how to avoid breaking water surface (Science Daily). Korean scientists are excited about these bugs that walk on water, thinking that if they figure out how they do it, money could be made. Somehow, the bugs know how to avoid breaking the surface. The paper in Nature Communications ends, “The fundamental concepts presented in this study can also give a guideline to develop semi-aquatic robots that aim to emulate the superior locomotory abilities of the water striders on water.”Mimicking biological functionality with polymers for biomedical applications (Nature). The title is self-explanatory, but the first paragraph is worth reading. It emphasizes the rationale for biomimetics and why it is leading to a science gold rush:The vast opportunities for biomaterials design and functionality enabled by mimicking nature continue to stretch the limits of imagination. As both biological understanding and engineering capabilities develop, more sophisticated biomedical materials can be synthesized that have multifaceted chemical, biological and physical characteristics designed to achieve specific therapeutic goals. Mimicry is being used in the design of polymers for biomedical applications that are required locally in tissues, systemically throughout the body, and at the interface with tissues.Light-induced vesicle explosions to mimic cellular reactions (Phys.org). “Cells are the site of a multitude of chemical reactions, the precision of which is envied by scientists,” so Europeans are acting on their envy. They created artificial vesicles they can get to explode with light, releasing their content on demand. Basic science precedes application: “This research could have medical applications in the long term, but for the time being researchers are studying the possibility of releasing substances in a controlled manner within artificial polymer cells, in order to be able to reproduce and better understand some of the metabolic reactions of the biological cell.”Biomaterials: Sharks shift their spine into high gear (Nature News). Get into the shark cage and watch. “It emerges that a dogfish shark’s spine becomes stiffer as the fish swims faster, enabling the animal to swim efficiently at different speeds. The finding could also provide inspiration for the design of robotic biomaterials.” Too bad Kolman and Summers win SEQOTW for their ending statement:In an age of climate change and increasing environmental pollution, inventors are increasingly looking to nature for inspiration when trying to build clean and efficient machines. What better animals to choose than sharks, given that their capacity for movement has been refined over more than 420 million years of evolution?Last but not least, what good is a wolverine? Isn’t that a nasty, vicious animal you want to stay away from? Check this out:A wolverine inspired material: Self-healing, transparent, highly stretchable material can be electrically activated (Phys.org). Well, this one is not pure biomimetics. It’s only partly about wolverines that live in the forest. “Inspired by wound healing in nature, self-healing materials repair damage caused by wear and extend the lifetime, and lower the cost, of materials and devices.” That’s the biomimetics part. But Chao Wang at UC Riverside also engaged in what might be dubbed comimetics. “Wang developed an interest in self-healing materials because of his lifelong love of Wolverine, the comic book character who has the ability to self-heal.” Think of it this way. The comic book character wouldn’t have been conceived without natural knowledge that real organisms can and do self-heal, some better than others. Scientists are inspired to figure that out, too, by observing nature (10/15/16, 3/08/16). Humans may have lost some of that ability over time (4/06/16); maybe we can get it back.Happy New Biomimetics Year! The future belongs to design in nature. Let’s get the word out in 2017, and don’t let Darwin take credit (8/24/07).last_img read more

The Key IoT Security Questions You Need To Ask

first_imgRelated Posts Tags:#authentication#Azure#Azure IoT Suite#Connected Devices#hardware#IoT hub#iot in action#IoT Security#Microsoft#security#top An Internet of Things (IoT) solution offers a multitude of business benefits from decreased operational costs to new revenue streams. But it also comes with a host of security considerations, including an ever-changing array of regulatory compliance requirements, demanding expert navigation and acute attention to detail.Below I’ve listed some of the critical questions to ask when deploying a secure IoT solution. To learn more about IoT security, be sure to register for the IoT in Action event in San Francisco on February 13.How secure are your things?For starters, the actual devices must be secure. In the next few years, a new wave of innovation will drive down costs and inundate the market with internet-connected devices in every price range, from electronic toys to manufacturing sensors. In anticipation of this, my Microsoft colleagues have identified The seven properties of highly secure devices. I have listed out each of these properties below, along with the fundamental questions you must ask:The hardware-based root of trust: Does each device have a unique identity that is inseparable from the hardware?Small trusted computing base: Is most of the device’s software outside its trusted computing base?Defense in depth: Does your device software have multiple layers of protection built-in?Compartmentalization: Are you using hardware-enforced barriers to stop failures from propagating to other components?Certificates-based authentication: Do your devices use certificates (vs. passwords)?Renewable security: Can the device’s software be updated automatically to a more secure state?Failure reporting: Do you have a solution in place to report software failures to the manufacturer?How secure are your connections? More to the point, when you’ve got a bunch of devices talking to each other over the internet, how will you safeguard data confidentiality and integrity? When choosing an IoT monitoring and connection solution, make sure that it is using industry-proven data encryption. Solutions like the Azure IoT Suite secure the internet connection between the IoT device and IoT hub using the Transport Layer Security (TLS) standard.Another question to ask is how you will prevent unsolicited inbound connections from wreaking havoc on your devices? Make sure that only devices are allowed to initiate connections and not the IoT hub. And speaking of the IoT hub: make sure that the one you’re using has the capability of maintaining a per-device queue – meaning that it can store messages for devices and wait for the devices to connect. For more on this topic, be sure to read IoT security from the ground up.How secure is your cloud solution?Is your cloud provider following rigorous security best practices? When choosing a cloud provider, make sure you pay careful attention to how they are handling the following areas.Network traffic segregation: Is IoT traffic segregated from other network traffic using an IoT gateway or other means?Monitoring: How is network traffic being monitored? How will you know if any credentials are compromised or if unmanaged devices are accessing your cloud services?Security controls: How well do you know your cloud provider’s SLA (service-level agreement)? Which security controls are being maintained by your provider and which will you need to address internally?Encryption and security key management: Does your IoT solution allow you to define access control policies for each security key? Is data in the cloud encrypted?Have you registered for IoT in Action in San Francisco, CA on February 13, 2018?These questions only scratch the broad surface of IoT security. To learn more about securing your IoT solution, register for this free, one-day event. You’ll hear from the researchers behind The seven properties of highly secured devices and see an IoT solution come to life before your eyes. You’ll also get insights into how Microsoft addresses IoT security through its Azure solutions. Plus, connect with partners who can help you bring your IoT solution from concept to reality. View the full agenda. Olivia Burgess Leveraging Big Data that Data Websites Should T…center_img How Data Analytics Can Save Lives AI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storage Internet of Things Makes it Easier to Steal You…last_img read more

BCCI announces Rs 20 lakh cash prize for India U-19 squad

first_imgThe BCCI on Sunday announced a cash prize of Rs 20 lakh each for members of the Indian team which lifted its third Under-19 World Cup title in Townsville after defeating defending champions Australia.BCCI President N Srinivasan congratulated the team, which was led superbly by unbeaten centurion skipper Unmukt Chand in the final against the defending champions.Chand led from the front with a magnificent 111 as the Indian colts beat Australia by six wickets.”Many congratulations to the Indian team for winning the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup. We won the ‘senior’ World Cup last year, and now our boys have triumphed in the junior version of the tournament.This is a great day for Indian cricket. The Board would like to announce a cash prize of Rs 20 lakh to each player, and Rs 15 lakh to each member of the support staff,” Srinivasan said in a statement.This was India U-19s first triumph after Mohammed Kaif and Virat Kohli led their respective teams to victory in 2000 and 2008 editions respectively.BCCI secretary Sanjay Jagdale also extended his wishes to the Indian team and said every member of the squad worked hard towards this victory.”The Indian cricket team has played some extraordinary cricket in the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup. The members of the team have worked hard, and deserve the title. Heartiest congratulations to the boys and support staff for winning the World Cup,” he said.last_img read more

IPL 7: Punjab seek finals berth against Chennai in Qualifier 2

first_imgPunjab will be looking to make their second chance count as they face upbeat Chennai in IPL 7, Qualifier 2Buoyed by their convincing seven-wicket win over title holders Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings will take on Kings XI Punjab in their second IPL knockout game inside three days on Friday with swashbuckling batsman Glenn Maxwell being a major threat to their chances.Riding on the 25-year-old Australian batsman`s incandescent 90-plus run knocks in Abu Dhabi and Cuttack in the group stage of the T20 League, Kings XI Punjab had flattened two-time champions Chennai Super Kings.Tomorrow`s Qualifier 2, the penultimate IPL-7 match, at the Wankhede Stadium will provide Chennai a great platform to avenge those two defeats and leapfrog into the June 1 summit clash against Kolkata Knight Riders at Bangalore.However, to achieve the feat of entering the final for the sixth time, Chennai will have to stop Maxwell, who simply tore into their bowlers, especially two key spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja on the two previous occasions. Maxwell, the third highest run-getter with 539 runs this season, smashed 95 in 43 balls in Abu Dhabi last month to help Punjab chase down a massive 206-run target set up by the Super Kings. The Victorian was even more dominating in their subsequent clash earlier this month at Cuttack, where he hit a whirlwind 90 off just 35 balls to power Punjab to an incredible score of 231.Ashwin was smashed for 38 runs without a wicket in just two overs by Maxwell, while Jadeja conceded 37 runs in three overs without any success.The destruction of these two Super Kings` bowlers by Maxwell will certainly come up for discussion by the Super Kings` think-tank ahead of their do-or-die encounter.advertisementBut Chennai will certainly look to take advantage of the fact that Kings XI, who had looked almost unstoppable during the group stage, have had their hiccups of late. They were beaten comprehensively by Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens yesterday. Kings XI need to not only regroup quickly but also get over the travel fatigue in order to match the efficiency of the Super Kings, who simply outplayed Mumbai Indians here last night.Super Kings changed their opening combination as they sent South Africa`s Faf du Plessis along with Dwayne Smith, the second highest run-scorer with 559 runs this season, instead of in-form New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum. The strategy paid off as the two stitched a half-century stand in quick time to lay a solid platform. Suresh Raina, who hit 33-ball 54 not out and stayed till the end, along with David Hussey (40 not out in 29 balls) then carried the Super Kings past Mumbai`s 173 for eight with a breezy unbroken stand of 89 for the fourth wicket.The Super Kings` overall display was efficient without being flamboyant, and they would require another such stellar performance to deflate Kings XI`s hopes of making their maiden entry into the IPL title contest. Super Kings have relied on their Indian bowling trio of purple cap holder Mohit Sharma and two lead spinners (Ashwin and Jadeja), and would hope they can do the trick against the marauding blades of not only Maxwell and David Miller but also those of Virender Sehwag, Manan Vohra, Wriddhiman Saha and captain George Bailey.This explosive batting line up failed to get going against the Knight Riders while chasing a modest 164-run target, and Kings XI would be eager to get over the flop show and put their best foot forward in what is their second and last chance to enter the final.Kings XI`s bowling attack is also good. They have been relying mostly on their Indian players in Sandeep Sharma (17 wickets), left arm spinner Akshar Patel (16 wickets), who has been included in the Indian team for the tour of Bangladesh next month, and seasoned Laxmipathy Balaji (12 wickets), along with Australian left arm pacer Mitchell Johnson (14 wickets). They tried out leggie Karanveer Singh and Parvinder Awana in Qualifier 1, while resting Sandeep Sharma and Balaji, both of whom should be back in the playing eleven tomorrow.The Kings XI bowlers need to provide the team with some early wickets against the Super Kings, who have the requisite depth and explosive power in their batting that includes captain and world`s most envied finisher Mahendra Singh Dhoni, to overhaul big scores. A capacity crowd is expected to witness the season`s second last IPL game and they would not like to watch anything less than another humdinger.Teams (from):Kings XI Punjab: Virender Sehwag, Manan Vohra, Wridhiman Saha, Glenn Maxell, David Miller, George Bailey(c), Akshar Patel, Rishi Dhawan, Mitchell Johnson, Karanveer Singh, L Balaji, Sandeep Sharma, Parvinder Awana, B Hendricks, Shaun Marsh, Cheteshwar Pujara, Mandeep Singh, Shardul Thakur, Shivam Sharma, Anureet Singh, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, M Karthik.advertisementChennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni(c), Suresh Raina, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Faf du Plessis, Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith, Ashish Nehra, Mohit Sharma, Samuel Badree, Ben Hilfenhaus, Matt Henry, B Aparajith, Mithun Manhas, Ishwar Pandey, Pawan Negi, Vijay Shankar, Ronit More, John Hastingslast_img