The elasticity of blood vessels, the self-healing properties of bone, the strength of nacre, the smart adhesion of gecko feet, the self-cleaning quality of the lotus leaf, the resistance of the spiderweb: in such myriad ways, biology offers endless inspiration to nanomechanics. Nicola Pugno, an engineer and physicist at Università di Trento, Italy, has generated news-worthy research on a hierarchical nanotube or graphene adhesive system, which is strong enough to suspend a person's full body weight from any ceiling or wall, while also being easily detachable. Recipient of a 2011 Starting Grant from the European Research Council, Pugno is the founder and head of the Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Nanomechanics and the author of nearly 200 papers on various fields of mechanics, published in leading international journals. In this Falling Walls lecture, he presents the wondrous results from his acclaimed research on bio-inspired nanomaterials - likely to make him the next idol of Spider-Man fans worldwide.
Strength of Graphene Nanotubes (1:37) -- A Space Elevator (1:48) -- Spiraling a Graphene Core (1:02) -- Toughness of a Spider Web (2:17) -- Impact of a Localized Load (1:04) -- The Super Adhesion of Gecko Feet (1:30) -- Spatula Foot Formation (2:26) -- The Super Hydrophobic Lotus Effect (1:52) -- Credits: Breaking the Wall of Super Materials: How Biology Inspires Nanomechanics (0:37)
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