Biologically !nspired design
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Science and technology are increasingly hitting the limits of approaches based on traditional disciplines, and Biology may serve as an untapped resource for design methodology, with concept-testing having occurred over millions of years of evolution. By understanding biological principles and translating them into human built systems, Biologically Inspired Design can be used to develop new materials, new sensing and locomotory systems, more efficient and “green” chemical processes, and more environmentally conscious design and manufacturing systems. This unique method trains scientists and engineers and designers to ask, “what problems does this biological system solve?” teaches biologists to identify potential design solutions relevant to specific technological problems, and gives designers sufficient knowledge and familiarity with biology to seek solutions from the organic world. Biological systems at all levels use life-friendly materials manufactured at room temperatures, often operate under energetic limitations. Biological models may thus be excellent guides for novel technologies and ways to reduce energy consumption and reliance on scarce or toxic materials and also help transform our view of the natural world. Experiencing the benefits of Nature as a source of innovative and inspiring principles encourages us to preserve and protect the natural world rather than simply to harvest its products. At the Georgia Institute of Technology, the goal of the Center for Biologically-Inspired Design is to facilitate, develop infrastructure for, and promote interdisciplinary research and education.