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Latest David Hu Stories

2012-11-01 10:17:33

This month's special issue of Physics World is devoted to animal physics, and includes science writer Stephen Ornes explanation of how pond skaters effortlessly skip across water leaving nothing but a small ripple in their wake. As Ornes writes, our current understanding of the mechanisms adopted by the pond skater is down to the efforts of David Hu, who as a mathematics graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology spent four years studying their behaviour. Hu, along with his...

Shakedown - How To Dry A Furry Mammal
2012-08-20 11:34:13

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online In continuing a trend that has seen scientists looking to the mechanics of nature for inspiration, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are studying the ways in which furry mammals shake themselves dry. The study – which involved 33 different animals, including 16 species and five dog breeds - found that furry mammals can shake 70 percent of the water off their bodies in just a fraction of a second. They also saw...

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2009-06-10 06:05:00

Researchers have gained insight on how snakes slither with a simple physics experiment. The research, which appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, dispels previous theories that snakes push off nearby obstacles while slithering. Instead, snakes exploit the fact that their scales have different grip in different directions, and increase speed by lifting curved parts of their bodies. The researchers from New York University and the Georgia Institute of Technology...

2005-09-29 19:42:32

A "meniscus"--the crescent-shaped and barely visible slope literally at water's edge--can mean life or death to an insect the size of a speck of dust. Water bugs that tiny must summon the energy to "surf" themselves up the problematic interface between liquid and solid in ponds and other wet places to escape predators or reproduce. Menisci are all around us, "but we don't notice them because they're so small, only a few millimeters in height," said mathematician David Hu of the Massachusetts...

2005-09-28 16:40:17

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--MIT mathematicians have discovered how certain insects can climb what to them are steep, slippery slopes in the water's surface without moving their limbs -- and do it at high speed. Welcome to the world of the tiny creatures that live on the surface of ponds, lakes and other standing bodies of water. There, "all the rules change," said David Hu, a graduate student in the Department of Mathematics and first author of a paper on the work to appear in the Sept. 29 issue of...