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Latest Insect flight Stories

flying jellyfish drone
2014-01-16 07:56:31

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Scientists at New York University announced Wednesday that they have built a prototype of the world’s first jellyfish drone. The tiny, electrically powered machine weighs in at just 2.1 grams and can hover in a stable manner without the use of sensors, recover from disturbances and maneuver in ways resembling a flying jellyfish, the researchers said. Previous designs for so-called flapping wing aircraft, or ornithopters, have...

Bumblebees More Stable In Flight Than When Hovering
2013-03-15 08:16:17

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Researchers wrote in the Journal of Theoretical Biology about how bumblebees are actually more unstable when they hover rather than when they fly fast. Na Xu and Mao Sun from Beijing University of Aeronautics & Astronautics in China analyzed the way bumblebees fly at different speeds by using a mathematical model. Their model showed that the bumblebee is unstable when it hovers and flies slowly, and becomes neutral or weakly stable...

Male Virgin Moths Think They're Hot When They're Not
2012-06-07 09:12:58

Female sex odor makes cool males take flight too soon Talk about throwing yourself into a relationship too soon. A University of Utah study found that when a virgin male moth gets a whiff of female sex attractant, he's quicker to start shivering to warm up his flight muscles, and then takes off prematurely when he's still too cool for powerful flight. So his headlong rush to reach the female first may cost him the race. The study illustrates the tradeoff between being quick to start...

Image 1 - Butterflies Inspire Bug-Sized Flying Robots
2012-02-03 04:41:50

[ Watch the Video ] To improve the next generation of insect-size flying machines, Johns Hopkins engineers have been aiming high-speed video cameras at some of the prettiest bugs on the planet. By figuring out how butterflies flutter among flowers with amazing grace and agility, the researchers hope to help small airborne robots mimic these maneuvers. U.S. defense agencies, which have funded this research, are supporting the development of bug-size flyers to carry out reconnaissance,...

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2011-07-19 11:30:00

Biologists and engineers team up to unlock the secret to the hummingbird's 'snap-buckling' beak The shape of a hummingbird's beak allows for a "controlled elastic snap" that allows it to snatch up flying insects in a mere fraction of a second "”with greater speed and power than could be achieved by jaw muscles alone, says a new study in a forthcoming issue of Journal of Theoretical Biology. Hummingbird beaks are built to feed on flowers, but hummingbirds can't live on nectar alone. To...

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2011-06-27 08:31:48

About 100 million years ago, a tiny mayfly had a problem. Like most adult mayflies, she only had that one day to live anyway, so there was no time to waste. She took her mating flight, got fertilized, and was about to lay her eggs when something went horribly wrong. She got stuck in some oozing tree sap and died, preserved for all time in the magic of amber. There would be ho hatchlings. It was a pretty rude ending to what was already going to be a short adulthood. But her personal tragedy...

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2010-12-08 08:53:17

Flying insects' altitude control mechanisms are the focus of research being conducted in a Caltech laboratory under an Air Force Office of Scientific Research grant that may lead to technology that controls altitude in a variety of aircraft for the Air Force. "This work investigates sensory-motor feedback mechanisms in the insect brain that could inspire new approaches to flight stabilization and navigation in future insect-sized vehicles for the military," said Dr. Willard Larkin, AFOSR...

2010-11-22 19:08:46

In the future, tiny air vehicles may be able to fly through cracks in concrete to search for earthquake victims, explore a contaminated building or conduct surveillance missions for the military. But today, designing the best flying mechanism for these miniature aerial machines is still a challenging task. Creating micro-scale air vehicles that mimic the flapping of winged insects or birds has become popular, but they typically require a complex combination of pitching and plunging motions to...

2010-03-01 15:21:02

Observing the aerial maneuvers of fruit flies, Cornell University researchers have uncovered how the insects "“ when disturbed by sharp gusts of wind "“ right themselves and stay on course. Fruit flies use an automatic stabilizer reflex that helps them recover with precision from midflight stumbles, according to observations published online today (March 1, 2010) in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Learning from the biological world could help the mechanical, as...

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2009-11-18 05:55:00

CFD visualization used at Wright State University to study the complex flow physics of dragonfly flight Most students caught hanging out in the school parking lot during class might find themselves in a bit of trouble, but for Dr. Haibo Dong's grad students, it's a study requirement.   "They've been out there all morning trying to catch a few dragonflies," he laughs. "We have a high-speed camera in the lab, but don't have any subjects to film. Catching them can be hard because...


Word of the Day
lambent
  • Licking.
  • Hence Running along or over a surface, as if in the act of licking; flowing over or along; lapping or bathing; softly bright; gleaming.
This word comes the Latin 'lambere,' to lick.
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