Browse Definitions :
Definition

biomimetics (biomimicry)

Biomimetic refers to human-made processes, substances, devices, or systems that imitate nature.

The art and science of designing and building biomimetic apparatus is also known as biomimicry because they mimic biological systems. The field is of special interest to researchers in nanotechnology, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), the medical industry, and the military.

Some biomimetic processes have been in use for years. An example is the artificial synthesis of certain vitamins and antibiotics. More recently, biomimetics have been suggested as applicable in the design of machine vision systems, machine hearing systems, signal amplifiers, navigational systems, and data converters. A neural network is a biomimetic system that works by making associations and educated guesses, and that can learn from its own mistakes; an android is a humanoid robot designed to have the same basic form and kinetic abilities as a human.

Here's how biomimicry is applied to enable an electronic nose:
An electric nose detects the chemical components of an odor and performs analysis to identify it based on that information. Every odor is made up of molecules and each molecule is a particular size and shape, which corresponds to a similarly-sized and shaped receptor in the human nose. When specific receptors in a human nose receive their matching molecules, they send signals to the brain, which identifies the smell associated with those particular molecules. Electronic noses based on the biological model work similarly, substituting sensors for receptors and transmitting the signal to a software program for processing, rather than to the brain.

Other possible applications of biomimetics include nanorobot antibodies that seek and destroy disease-causing bacteria, artificial organs, artificial arms, legs, hands, and feet, and various electronic devices. One of the more intriguing ideas is the so-called biochip, a microprocessor that grows from a starter crystal in much the same way that a seed grows into a tree, or a fertilized egg grows into an embryo.

Also see: self-assembly, 3D audio

See Janine Benyus' TED talk, Biomimicry in action:

This was last updated in April 2016

Continue Reading About biomimetics (biomimicry)

SearchCompliance
  • pure risk

    Pure risk refers to risks that are beyond human control and result in a loss or no loss with no possibility of financial gain.

  • risk reporting

    Risk reporting is a method of identifying risks tied to or potentially impacting an organization's business processes.

  • chief risk officer (CRO)

    The chief risk officer (CRO) is the corporate executive tasked with assessing and mitigating significant competitive, regulatory ...

SearchSecurity
  • script kiddie

    Script kiddie is a derogative term that computer hackers coined to refer to immature, but often just as dangerous, exploiters of ...

  • cipher

    In cryptography, a cipher is an algorithm for encrypting and decrypting data.

  • What is risk analysis?

    Risk analysis is the process of identifying and analyzing potential issues that could negatively impact key business initiatives ...

SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • What is risk mitigation?

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • fault-tolerant

    Fault-tolerant technology is a capability of a computer system, electronic system or network to deliver uninterrupted service, ...

  • synchronous replication

    Synchronous replication is the process of copying data over a storage area network, local area network or wide area network so ...

SearchStorage
  • gigabyte (GB)

    A gigabyte (GB) -- pronounced with two hard Gs -- is a unit of data storage capacity that is roughly equivalent to 1 billion ...

  • MRAM (magnetoresistive random access memory)

    MRAM (magnetoresistive random access memory) is a method of storing data bits using magnetic states instead of the electrical ...

  • storage volume

    A storage volume is an identifiable unit of data storage. It can be a removable hard disk, but it does not have to be a unit that...

Close