venerdì 17 febbraio 2017

RESEARCHERS DISCOVER METHOD TO REPLICATE NATURE'S ABILITY TO DEVELOP INNOVATIVE MATERIALS

Trad. I ricercatori dell'Università del Surrey hanno sviluppato
una nuova tecnica innovativa per simulare
uno dei più grandi successi della natura: il colore strutturale naturale.


I colori iridescenti brillanti penne della coda del pavone
sono creati da colorazione strutturale, come notarono già Isaac Newton e Robert Hooke.

Researchers from the University of Surrey have developed an innovative new technique to mimic one of nature’s greatest achievements – natural structural colour.

Following in depth research to explain the physics behind photonic band gap in structured photonic materials, a new method has been devised to characterise the internal structures of natural materials and replicate their interaction with light using 3D printing of ceramics. The internal structure of materials and their local-self uniformity dictates their ability to diffuse absorb, reflect and transmit light.


During this study researchers found a direct relationship between the uniformity of the internal structure (at wavelength scales) and its ability to block certain wavelengths in natural materials. Armed with this knowledge researchers developed a new mathematical metric to measure which photonic structures best control the propagation of light enabling the design of new materials with different functionalities dependant on need.

Testing the theory, researchers developed the first ever amorphous gyroid (triamond) structure with band gaps, which is similar to the structuring found in some butterfly wings, via a 3D ceramic printer. Similarly to structures found in nature these structures can reflect and absorb light, sound and heat wave lengths leading the way for the creation of heat-rejecting window films and paints to improve the energy efficiency of buildings and vehicles.

Lead author Dr Marian Florescu from the University of Surrey said: “It is truly amazing that what we thought was an artificial design could naturally be present in nature.

“This discovery will impact how we design materials in the future to manipulate their interaction with light, heat and sound.”

This study has today been published in the Nature Journal.

About the University of Surrey

The University of Surrey is one of the UK’s top higher education institutions and was recognised as the University of the Year in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2016. With 125 years of academic heritage since our founding in Battersea, and 50 years of world-class teaching and research in Guildford, the University of Surrey is the intellectual home for more than 15,200 students, 100,000 alumni and 2,800 staff.

Freedom of thought, pursuit of academic excellence, and the advancement and application of knowledge underpin the wonderful things happening here. Our mission is to transform lives and enrich society through outstanding teaching and learning, pioneering research and impactful innovation.

The University of Surrey has been recognised by three Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Further and Higher Education and is a destination of choice for higher learning in subjects ranging from Engineering to the Arts. As a global university, we are proud of our strong partnerships with internationally leading institutions and businesses, while being firmly engaged with our local community in Guildford and Surrey. We are committed to educating the next generation of professionals and leaders, and to providing thought leadership and innovation to address global challenges and contribute to a better tomorrow for the world.



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