Nature has been developing for billions of years to function as efficiently as possible. We humans can learn from that. “Nature is the best architect”, they say. Perhaps the most famous example is Velcro, inspired by the Burdock plant. Swiss inventor Georges de Mestral was intrigued by the burdock burrs that kept sticking to his dog’s fur as they passed by the unique plants. He decided to study the burs under a microscope and had seen that the burdock burr contains hundreds of minuscule “hooks.” That – in a nutshell – is how the innovation Velcro was born. We call this “learning by nature” or “biomimicry”.

Laura Stevens is senior lecturer Industrial Design Engineering at The Hague University of Applied Sciences and biomicry education expert. She will tell you more about biomimicry and will take you on an investigation.

Spodlight

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