Last updated on April 21, 2014 at 5:21 EDT
CT-scan of Sea Horse
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CT-scan of Sea Horse

May 17, 2013
Sea horses get their exceptional flexibility from the structure of their bony plates, which form its external armor. The plates slide past each other as the creature moves. Shown at left is an image from a micro CT-scan of the animal, revealing the sea horses skeleton, as well as its bony plates. Two engineers the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego, have identified three characteristics of biological materials that they believe engineers would do well to emulate in man-made materials: light weight, toughness and strength. Creating new biomimetic materials such as these could lead to better body armor, lighter aircraft and stronger, more flexible materials. To learn more about this research, see the Jacobs news story Tough, Light and Strong: Lessons From Nature Could Lead to the Creation of New Materials, Science Study Says. [Research supported by National Science Foundation grant DMR 10-06931.] (Date of Image: 2012-13) Credit: Mike Porter, Material Sciences, Jacobs School of Engineering, University of California, San Diego