Biomimicry at its best.

These days, the human mind has been conditioned in a number of ways. If one talks about aircraft, one automatically thinks about airplanes, helicopters, military fighter aircraft, … However, what this basically comes down to is people automatically think about either ‘stationary’ wings, turbines and propellers. Stationary wings do have a few moving parts to influence the created amount of lift, but are not what causes lift to happen. This is normal, because when we look up in the sky, this is exactly the only things we see.

festo bird

However, if we look up, we actually see another type of aircraft: the birds. What is special about them is the way they propel themselves through the air. Instead of stationary wings, they flap their wings to propel them forward. This of course is nothing new, everybody knows how birds transport themselves. however, one might wonder if this could also be applied to manmade machines that mimic the their way of transport.

As the video below already might suggest, this was indeed possible. With the help of Festo, which is specialized in electric and pneumatic transducers, a team of engineers made a robotic bird which can fly around the same way real birds do. This just goes to show that nature indeed holds a lot of answers to certain problems we are faced with and that it’s definitely worth looking into. The industrial applications of this are probably nonexistent, it’s hard to imagine an airplane that flies around using this as propulsion. However, this indicates that there are still other possibilities than what the modern day has already discovered. You can watch the entire video below:


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