Biomimicry for Aerospace

Biomimicry for Aerospace

Technologies and Applications

1st Edition - February 19, 2022

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  • Editors: Vikram Shyam, Marjan Eggermont, Aloysius Hepp
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128210741
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128210758

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The solutions to technical challenges posed by flight and space exploration tend to be multidimensional, multifunctional, and increasingly focused on the interaction of systems and their environment. The growing discipline of biomimicry focuses on what humanity can learn from the natural world. Biomimicry for Aerospace: Technologies and Applications features the latest advances of bioinspired materials–properties relationships for aerospace applications. Readers will get a deep dive into the utility of biomimetics to solve a number of technical challenges in aeronautics and space exploration. Part I: Biomimicry in Aerospace: Education, Design, and Inspiration provides an educational background to biomimicry applied for aerospace applications. Part II: Biomimetic Design: Aerospace and Other Practical Applications discusses applications and practical aspects of biomimetic design for aerospace and terrestrial applications and its cross-disciplinary nature. Part III: Biomimicry and Foundational Aerospace Disciplines covers snake-inspired robots, biomimetic advances in photovoltaics, electric aircraft cooling by bioinspired exergy management, and surrogate model-driven bioinspired optimization algorithms for large-scale and complex problems. Finally, Part IV: Bio-Inspired Materials, Manufacturing, and Structures reviews nature-inspired materials and processes for space exploration, gecko-inspired adhesives, bioinspired automated integrated circuit manufacturing on the Moon and Mars, and smart deployable space structures inspired by nature.  

Key Features

  • Introduces educational aspects of bio-inspired design for novel and practical technologies
  • Presents a series of bio-inspired technologies applicable to the field of aerospace engineering
  • Provides an introduction to nature-inspired design and engineering and its relevance to planning and developing the next generation of robotic and human space missions


Scientists, aerospace and related industry engineers, Masters’ and graduate students, Academics who teach bioinspired materials and processes, researchers who work in the biomimetics, manufacturers that seek new technologies

Table of Contents

  • Cover image
  • Title page
  • Table of Contents
  • Copyright
  • Contributors
  • Preface
  • Part 1. Biomimicry in aerospace: Education, design and inspiration
  • Chapter One. Biomimicry and biodesign for innovation in future space colonization
  • 1.1. Introduction
  • 1.2. The entrepreneurial space industry
  • 1.3. From biomimicry and bio-inspired design to bio-enhanced and biohybrid design, technology, and innovation
  • 1.4. Applied research into biomimetic and algorithmic design
  • 1.5. Bio-inspired, bio-enhanced, and biohybrid engineering: Speculative design concepts for space colonization
  • 1.6. Current research in the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation: Case studies with undergraduate students
  • 1.7. Conclusions
  • Chapter TWO. A bio-inspired design and space challenges cornerstone project
  • 2.1. Introduction
  • 2.2. NASA challenges
  • 2.3. Ask Nature strategy research
  • 2.4. Challenges and strategies diagrams
  • 2.5. Strategies illustration
  • 2.6. Designing and drawing the bio-inspired design solution
  • 2.7. Data analysis
  • 2.8. Conclusion
  • Chapter THREE. Toward systematic nature-inspired problem-solving for aerospace applications and beyond
  • 3.1. Introduction
  • 3.2. Biomimicry tool landscape
  • 3.3. Virtual interchange for Nature-inspired Exploration: 2019 Biocene Tools Workshop
  • 3.4. Analysis and discussion
  • 3.5. Conclusions and future directions
  • Chapter Four. Parallels in communication technology and natural phenomena
  • 4.1. Introduction
  • 4.2. The Schmitt Trigger: Biomimetics and synchronicity
  • 4.3. Sense and avoid: Collective motion in bird flocks and aircraft formations
  • 4.4. Periodic structures: Crystals and electronic filters
  • 4.5. Charles Darwin: Butterflies, genetic algorithms and microwave antennas
  • 4.6. Color and light: Butterflies and dichroic mirrors
  • 4.7. Smart materials: Artificial muscles and antennas
  • 4.8. Whispers: Cathedrals and virus detectors
  • 4.9. Spookiness: Quantum entanglement and advanced cryptography
  • 4.10. Noise: Communications
  • 4.11. Summary and conclusions
  • Chapter Five. Atacama Desert: Genius of place
  • 5.1. Atacama Desert
  • 5.2. Strategies adopted by species to survive in the Atacama Desert
  • 5.3. Discussion
  • 5.4. Conclusions
  • Chapter SIX. Bio-inspired design and additive manufacturing of cellular materials
  • 6.1. Introduction
  • 6.2. Cellular materials design
  • 6.3. Cellular materials in nature
  • 6.4. Additive manufacturing design constraints
  • 6.5. Toward a methodology: Honeycomb panel case study
  • 6.6. Summary
  • Part 2. Bio-inspired design: Aerospace and other practical applications
  • Chapter Seven. Biomimetic course design exploration for improved NASA zero gravity exercise equipment
  • 7.1. Introduction
  • 7.2. University of Akron biomimicry course: Response to NASA design challenge
  • 7.3. Biomimetic improvements to the exercise device box and accessories
  • 7.4. Biomimetic improvements to ropes and cables
  • 7.5. Conclusions and future work
  • Chapter Eight. Biomimetics of boxfish: Designing an aerodynamically efficient passenger car
  • 8.1. Introduction
  • 8.2. Methodology
  • 8.3. Results and discussion
  • 8.4. Conclusions
  • Chapter Nine. Thresholds of nature: How understanding one of nature's penultimate laws led to the PowerCone, a biomimetic energy source
  • 9.1. Background—thresholds abound
  • 9.2. The moment of inspiration
  • 9.3. Maple key aerodynamics
  • 9.4. The first prototypes
  • 9.5. Wind tunnel testing a PowerCone
  • 9.6. Time-Dependent Energy Transfer and thresholds
  • 9.7. Changing fluids: Tidal testing a PowerCone
  • 9.8. New computational frontiers: PowerCone
  • 9.9. Conclusion: Full-Scale Testing
  • Part 3. Biomimicry and foundational aerospace disciplines
  • Chapter Ten. Slithering across worlds—snake-inspired robots for extraterrestrial exploration
  • 10.1. Bio-inspired design
  • 10.2. Identifying the problem—traversing other worlds
  • 10.3. Searching planetary analogs for a natural model
  • 10.4. Snake locomotion—turning obstacles into advantages
  • 10.5. Replicating snakes' success—bio-inspired snake robots
  • 10.6. Applications and mission profiles
  • 10.7. Conclusion: Bio-inspired snake robots for extraterrestrial exploration
  • Chapter Eleven. Biomimetic advances in photovoltaics with potential aerospace applications
  • 11.1. Introduction
  • 11.2. Solar applications in aerospace
  • 11.3. Classes of solar cells
  • 11.4. Losses in solar cells
  • 11.5. Bio-inspired approaches for enhanced photovoltaics
  • 11.6. Bioinspiration and solar concentrators
  • 11.7. Honeycomb surface structures
  • 11.8. Bio-inspired surface area enhancement
  • 11.9. Modeling and simulation for photovoltaic power output optimization
  • 11.10. Concluding remarks: Future outlook
  • Chapter Twelve. Electric aircraft cooling with bio-inspired exergy management
  • 12.1. Introduction
  • 12.2. Technology barriers for air vehicle adoption
  • 12.3. Fault management challenge
  • 12.4. Thermal management challenge
  • 12.5. Integrated fault and thermal management
  • 12.6. High-exergy heat extraction
  • 12.7. Acoustic exergy pumping tubes
  • 12.8. Thermally redirectable heat pipes
  • 12.9. Integrated TREES system operation and test results summary
  • 12.10. Conclusion
  • Chapter Thirteen. Surrogate model-driven bio-inspired optimization algorithms for large-scale and high-dimensional problems
  • 13.1. Introduction
  • 13.2. Surrogate models
  • 13.3. Types of surrogate models
  • 13.4. Surrogate model-driven bio-inspired optimization algorithm
  • 13.5. Concluding remarks
  • Part 4. Bio-inspired materials, manufacturing and structures
  • Chapter Fourteen. Advancing research efforts in biomimicry to develop nature-inspired materials, processes for space exploration and more efficient aircraft
  • 14.1. Introduction
  • 14.2. Functional surfaces
  • 14.3. Bio-inspired structural polymers and composites
  • 14.4. Advanced materials processing technologies
  • 14.5. Conclusions
  • Chapter Fifteen. Space applications for gecko-inspired adhesives
  • 15.1. Introduction
  • 15.2. Materials and adhesive types
  • 15.3. Material choices for space applications of dry adhesives
  • 15.4. Applications of dry adhesives
  • 15.5. Challenges for dry adhesives specific to space environments
  • 15.6. Summary and conclusions
  • Chapter Sixteen. Automated electronic integrated circuit manufacturing on the Moon and Mars: Possibilities of the development of bio-inspired semiconductor technologies for space applications
  • 16.1. Introduction
  • 16.2. Important steps in semiconductor integrated circuit manufacturing
  • 16.3. Materials required for integrated circuit fabrication: Availability on the Moon and Mars
  • 16.4. The status of automated semiconductor integrated circuit manufacturing
  • 16.5. Additional technological requirements for establishing automated integrated circuit manufacturing units on the Moon and Mars
  • 16.6. Possibilities of development of bio-inspired semiconductor technology for space applications
  • 16.7. Discussion
  • 16.8. Conclusions
  • Chapter Seventeen. Smart deployable space structures inspired by nature
  • 17.1. Introduction
  • 17.2. Bio-inspired smart structures
  • 17.3. Mechanical analogs
  • 17.4. Conclusions
  • Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 526
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2022
  • Published: February 19, 2022
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128210741
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128210758

About the Editors

Vikram Shyam

Dr. Vikram Shyam is an adjunct professor at the University of Akron in the Mechanical Engineering department. He is also a research aerospace engineer who works as a futurist for NASA. He is the founder of the Virtual Interchange for Nature-Inspired Exploration (V.I.N.E.) at NASA's John H. Glenn Research Center. His interests include artificial intelligence, biomimicry, innovation design and futurology. Dr. Shyam is the recipient of NASA’s Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

Affiliations and Expertise

Adjunct Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Akron, OH, USA

Marjan Eggermont

Dr. Marjan Eggermont is a Teaching Professor and faculty member at the University of Calgary in the Mechanical and Manufacturing department of the Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary. She is also the Academic Director for Sustainable Engineering. Dr. Eggermont teaches in the areas of graphics, engineering design, visualization, and biomimicry. She co-founded and designs Zygote Quarterly (ZQ), an online journal to provide a platform to showcase the nexus of science and design using case studies, news, and articles. In 2005, she was one of the recipients of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Curriculum Innovation Award. She is a former board member of the American Society of Engineering Education.

Affiliations and Expertise

Teaching Professor, Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Aloysius Hepp

Aloysius F. Hepp earned a PhD in Inorganic Photochemistry in 1983 from MIT. He retired in December 2016 from the Photovoltaic & Electrochemical Systems Branch of the NASA Glenn Research Center. He was a visiting fellow at Harvard University from 1992-3. He was awarded the NASA Exceptional Achievement medal in 1997. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member at University of Albany and Cleveland State University. He has been Chief Technologist, Nanotech Innovations LLC, Oberlin, OH, USA since 2012. Dr. Hepp has co-authored nearly 200 publications (including six patents) focused on processing of thin film and nanomaterials for I-III-VI solar cells, Li-ion batteries, integrated power devices and flight experiments, and precursors and spray pyrolysis deposition of sulfides and carbon nanotubes. He has co-edited twelve books on advanced materials processing, energy conversion and electronics, biomimicry and aerospace technologies. He is currently Editor-in-Chief Emeritus of Materials Science in Semiconductor Processing (MSSP) and is currently the chair of the International Advisory Board of MSSP, as well as serving on the Editorial Advisory Boards of Mater. Sci. and Engin. B and Heliyon - all Elsevier journals.

Affiliations and Expertise

Chief Technologist, Nanotech Innovations LLC and a Science Advisory Board Member, CoreWater Technologies, Inc., Oberlin, OH, USA.

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