In this article, we report the observation of an air-encapsulating elastic mechanism of Dandelion spherical seed heads, namely blowballs, when submerged underwater. This peculiarity seems to be fortuitous since Taraxacum is living outside water; nevertheless, it could become beneficial for a better survival under critical conditions, e.g. of temporary flooding. The scaling of the volume of the air entrapped suggests its fractal nature with a dimension of 2.782 and a fractal air volume fraction of 4.82 × 10−2 m0.218, resulting in nominal air volume fractions in the range of 14–23%. This aspect is essential for the optimal design of bioinspired materials made up of Dandelion-like components. The miniaturization of such components leads to an increase in the efficiency of the air encapsulation up to the threshold (efficiency = 1) achieved for an optimal critical size. Thus, the optimal design is accomplished using small elements, with the optimal size, rather than using larger elements in a lower number. The described phenomenon, interesting per se, also brings bioinspired insights toward new related technological solutions for underwater air-trapping and air-bubbles transportation, e.g. the body surface of a man could allow an apnea (air consumption of 5–10 l/min) of about 10 min if it is covered by a material made up of a periodic repetition of Dandelion components of diameter ≅18 μm and having a total thickness of about 3–6 cm.

Air-encapsulating elastic mechanism of submerged Taraxacum blowballs / Pugno, M. C.; Misseroni, D.; Pugno, N. M.. - In: MATERIALS TODAY BIO. - ISSN 2590-0064. - 9:(2021), p. 100095. [10.1016/j.mtbio.2021.100095]

Air-encapsulating elastic mechanism of submerged Taraxacum blowballs

Misseroni D.;Pugno N. M.
2021

Abstract

In this article, we report the observation of an air-encapsulating elastic mechanism of Dandelion spherical seed heads, namely blowballs, when submerged underwater. This peculiarity seems to be fortuitous since Taraxacum is living outside water; nevertheless, it could become beneficial for a better survival under critical conditions, e.g. of temporary flooding. The scaling of the volume of the air entrapped suggests its fractal nature with a dimension of 2.782 and a fractal air volume fraction of 4.82 × 10−2 m0.218, resulting in nominal air volume fractions in the range of 14–23%. This aspect is essential for the optimal design of bioinspired materials made up of Dandelion-like components. The miniaturization of such components leads to an increase in the efficiency of the air encapsulation up to the threshold (efficiency = 1) achieved for an optimal critical size. Thus, the optimal design is accomplished using small elements, with the optimal size, rather than using larger elements in a lower number. The described phenomenon, interesting per se, also brings bioinspired insights toward new related technological solutions for underwater air-trapping and air-bubbles transportation, e.g. the body surface of a man could allow an apnea (air consumption of 5–10 l/min) of about 10 min if it is covered by a material made up of a periodic repetition of Dandelion components of diameter ≅18 μm and having a total thickness of about 3–6 cm.
Pugno, M. C.; Misseroni, D.; Pugno, N. M.
Air-encapsulating elastic mechanism of submerged Taraxacum blowballs / Pugno, M. C.; Misseroni, D.; Pugno, N. M.. - In: MATERIALS TODAY BIO. - ISSN 2590-0064. - 9:(2021), p. 100095. [10.1016/j.mtbio.2021.100095]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11572/296917
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