Aquatic predatory insects, like the nymphs of a dragonfly, use rapid movements to catch their prey and it presents challenges in terms of movements due to drag forces. Dragonfly nymphs are known to be voracious predators with structures and movements that are yet to be fully understood. Thus, we examine two main mouthparts of the dragonfly nymph (Libellulidae: Insecta: Odonata) that are used in prey capturing and cutting the prey. To observe and analyze the preying mechanism under water, we used high-speed photography and, electron microscopy. The morphological details suggest that the prey-capturing labium is a complex grasping mechanism with additional sensory organs that serve some functionality. The time taken for the protraction and retraction of labium during prey capture was estimated to be 187 ± 54 ms, suggesting that these nymphs have a rapid prey mechanism. The Young’s modulus and hardness of the mandibles were estimated to be 9.1 ± 1.9 GPa and 0.85 ± 0.13 GPa, respectively. Such mechanical properties of the mandibles make them hard tools that can cut into the exoskeleton of the prey and also resistant to wear. Thus, studying such mechanisms with their sensory capabilities provides a unique opportunity to design and develop bioinspired underwater deployable mechanisms.

Prey capturing dynamics and nanomechanically graded cutting apparatus of dragonfly nymph / Kundanati, L.; Das, P.; Pugno, N. M.. - In: MATERIALS. - ISSN 1996-1944. - 14:3(2021), pp. 559.1-559.13. [10.3390/ma14030559]

Prey capturing dynamics and nanomechanically graded cutting apparatus of dragonfly nymph

Pugno N. M.
2021-01-01

Abstract

Aquatic predatory insects, like the nymphs of a dragonfly, use rapid movements to catch their prey and it presents challenges in terms of movements due to drag forces. Dragonfly nymphs are known to be voracious predators with structures and movements that are yet to be fully understood. Thus, we examine two main mouthparts of the dragonfly nymph (Libellulidae: Insecta: Odonata) that are used in prey capturing and cutting the prey. To observe and analyze the preying mechanism under water, we used high-speed photography and, electron microscopy. The morphological details suggest that the prey-capturing labium is a complex grasping mechanism with additional sensory organs that serve some functionality. The time taken for the protraction and retraction of labium during prey capture was estimated to be 187 ± 54 ms, suggesting that these nymphs have a rapid prey mechanism. The Young’s modulus and hardness of the mandibles were estimated to be 9.1 ± 1.9 GPa and 0.85 ± 0.13 GPa, respectively. Such mechanical properties of the mandibles make them hard tools that can cut into the exoskeleton of the prey and also resistant to wear. Thus, studying such mechanisms with their sensory capabilities provides a unique opportunity to design and develop bioinspired underwater deployable mechanisms.
2021
3
Kundanati, L.; Das, P.; Pugno, N. M.
Prey capturing dynamics and nanomechanically graded cutting apparatus of dragonfly nymph / Kundanati, L.; Das, P.; Pugno, N. M.. - In: MATERIALS. - ISSN 1996-1944. - 14:3(2021), pp. 559.1-559.13. [10.3390/ma14030559]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11572/302312
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