Navigation Links
Specialized seeds can really float your boat
Date:7/3/2011

A new artificial surface inspired by floating seeds, which could provide an alternative to the toxic paints currently used to prevent fouling on ship hulls, has been developed by German scientists.

Scientists from the Biomimetics-Innovation-Centre have developed a new anti-fouling surface based on a seed from a species of palm tree. "These plants have seeds which are dispersed by the ocean currents. As it is an advantage for these seeds to remain free of fouling to allow them to disperse further, we guessed they might have specialised surfaces we could mimic," explains Katrin Mhlenbruch, a PhD researcher who is presenting this work at the Society for Experimental Biology Annual Conference in Glasgow on the 4th of July 2011.

The researchers floated seeds from 50 species in the North Sea for 12 weeks. The seeds of 12 species showed no fouling at all. "We then began by examining the micro-structure of the seeds' surfaces, to see if we could translate them into an artificial surface. The seeds we chose to mimic had a hairy-like structure," says Ms. Mhlenbruch. "This structure might be especially good at preventing fouling because the fibres constantly move, preventing marine organisms from finding a place to settle."

Using a silicone base the scientists created an artificial surface similar to the seeds, with fibres covering the surface. Currently the new surface is being trialled by floating it in the sea. "Initial results are quite good," says Ms. Mhlenbruch. "But we still have a long way to go"

Fouling by seaweeds and marine animals is a problem for the shipping industry, resulting in increased fuel costs. Currently the only solutions are highly toxic and environmentally damaging marine paints which are specifically designed to leach biocides to prevent organisms settling on the hull. "Our aim is to provide a new toxin-free and bio-inspired ship coating," says Ms. Mhlenbruch. "This would prevent environmental damage while allowing ships to operate efficiently."

Future work will include analysing the chemical composition of the seeds' surface, to find out whether this adds to their anti-fouling properties.


'/>"/>

Contact: Daisy Brickhill
brickhil@exchange.lancs.ac.uk
07-896-317-921
Society for Experimental Biology
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. UCLA, Japanese company to collaborate on specialized nano-imaging instrumentation
2. Harvards Wyss Institute uses natures design principles to create specialized nanofabrics
3. Disarming specialized stem cells might combat deadly ovarian cancer
4. UB specialized exercise regimen shown to relieve prolonged concussion symptoms
5. Storing seeds for a rainy day -- or in this case, a fire
6. Nottingham scientists reveal genetic wiring of seeds
7. Seedlings thrive with distant relatives, seeds with close family
8. New path to water efficient seeds opens as TIP pips PIP as water gatekeeper
9. Plants cloned as seeds
10. How spring-loaded filaree seeds self launch
11. Guardian angels for seeds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Specialized seeds can really float your boat 
(Date:3/24/2017)... The Controller General of Immigration from Maldives Mr. ... have received the prestigious international IAIR Award for the most innovative ... ... Maldives Immigration ... Algeen (small picture on the right) have received the IAIR award for ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 21, 2017   Neurotechnology , a provider ... today announced the release of the SentiVeillance ... improved facial recognition using up to 10 surveillance, ... computer. The new version uses deep neural-network-based facial ... it utilizes a Graphing Processing Unit (GPU) for ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... 20, 2017 PMD Healthcare announces the release ... Wellness Management System (WMS), a remote, real-time lung health ... PMD Healthcare is a Medical Device, Digital Health, and ... to creating innovative solutions that empower people to improve ... focus, PMD developed the first ever personal spirometer, Spiro ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... in 10 categories with over 30 nominees and well as the first-year award ... new award and the event was hosted by CompanyWeek and Manufacturers Edge, among ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... The University of ... round funding to three startups through the UConn Innovation Fund. The $1.5 million ... startups affiliated with UConn. , The UConn Innovation Fund provides investments of up ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... , ... The AMA is happy to announce that $48,000 in scholarships will ... scholarships are created through funds donated by model aviation organizations and individuals, AMA members, ... AMA Scholarship Committee, which is made up of model aviation pilots and enthusiasts. The ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... Frederick ... a range of emerging technology-based businesses, recently earned a $77,518 grant from the ... , Founded in 2004, FITCI is Frederick’s first incubator. A non-profit corporation, FITCI ...
Breaking Biology Technology: