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Beetles Inspire Frost Free Surfaces

By Mariah Killian

 

Photolithography is the process of transferring geometric shapes on a mask to the surface of a silicon wafer. This process has broken a new surface in scientific research. The inspiration for this came from the Namib Desert Beetle because it lives in the hottest place on Earth, yet it can collect airborne water.

The insects’ unique design has led it to an easy survival in such hot temperatures. It has a bumpy shell, and the tips of the bumps attracts water, but the smooth parts of the shell repels it. It creates droplets on the beetle’s shell; this creates a channel of water leading directly to the beatle’s mouth.

With inspiration from this amazing little bug, scientists used Photolithography to create frost free zones. Using one dry spot around some ice, scientist started their testing. They figured out if they can space out condensation, the water droplets can not touch each other, and the process of freezing can not start. Within the next few years, they should have a new technology for keeping airplanes, windshields and more from freezing over.  It is amazing to think that a small little beetle inspired something that could potentially be the next big thing.

 

Information from:  http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160122083436.htm

http://www.gizmag.com/beetle-patterns-ice-resistant-airplane/41465/

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