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2020-10-3

Why is it itchy? A second sk

<p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Do you remember that wool pullover from your grandma? Yeah, the heavy one with much more than 2 colors or&nbsp; a very tasteful motive on. It is that one that you only wear once a year when your grandma is there. The itchy one. When you think about this pullover your skin turns red.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Several years ago I had such a pullover. It was made of pure wool of sheep. I could never wear it. Way too itchy. Now, after purchasing several other wool products, I wanted to know why some kinds of wools are itchy and others are very&nbsp;soft and cosy.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">I think that topic fits very well to our actual theme session about surfaces. In fact, there are only few parameters which define the feeling of a specific material on our skins. Of course, there are differences in experiencing these different kinds of materials and surfaces. For sure a lot of&nbsp;people will never have problems with wool.</p><h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 24.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">A second skin</h3><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Why would you prefer wool in general as a superior material for your wearables? I would answer this by mentioning the attributes that can be delivered by wool in comparison to synthetic fibers.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">First to mention is the ability to regulate moisture, including sweat. Maybe this sounds a little bit trivial, but this property makes the difference between a stinky and a&nbsp;neutral smelling shirt.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">As you can see in&nbsp;the picture above, synthetic fibers are smooth, as natural keratin&nbsp;wool has a lot of „scales“ which make the surface rough and overall surface is much bigger than the surface of the synthetic fabrics for example&nbsp;polyester. This increased&nbsp;surface itself lets the water much easier evaporate, only sweat which can be metabolized by bacteria lets a shirt smell bad. So it is not the sweat itself which smells. On polyester, the sweat stays for much longer, so the bacteria have much more time to operate. Furthermore, the rough surface makes it harder for bacteria to attach on.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Other materials, which are also hygroscopic, like cotton or linen only have the possibility to store water inside the fabric/fibers. The stored sweat is not available for bacteria to metabolize, but of course it does not prevent bad smell such good as wool can do it, because of the limited storage available. The other effect mentioned above is&nbsp;still existing but less significant. Of course, it is possibly also depending on the fabric itself, that moisture can be regulated by ventilation and convection.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The second big advantage of wool as a second skin is the active heat management, which is directly connected to the evaporation rate, especially when we talk about cooling. So, it is no surprise that the fast water evaporation leads to a lower temperature. When we talk about warming, then the hygroscopic effect is interesting again. It keeps the skin dry and the curled structure of wool fabrics generates&nbsp;air pockets, where the air can stay. The curled structure has another side effect. It minimizes the contact area of the fabric to the skin, so the heat conduction is also reduced. These effects are also helping during the cooling process. Specific kinds of wool also have the ability of warming, when they are moist! Maybe the description of the absorption process follows in a later article.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 24.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Not one of a kind: wool</h3><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Now&nbsp;I want to give you an overview about the different kinds of wool.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Cotton is the only herbal kind of wool in this context. The fibers are harvested from the seed hairs of<em style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">&nbsp;Gossypium.</em>&nbsp;For a low budget this fibers are the perfect option, because in general cotton is cheap and easy to wear and clean. It is a more passive material for clothes, because it is not very good for warming or cooling. Of course, there a very big differences in quality and fiber length, depending on variety and production location. The best cotton is the West Indian Sea Island Cotton and has fiber length up to 55 mm. Also, it is possible to give cotton different kinds of refinements. My personal favourite is the mercerisation, where the yarn is pulled through a&nbsp;sodium hydroxide solution. The yarn macerates and the cross-section changes from reniform to round, while the fiber length gets reduced by 25%. Also, the mechanical strength and dimensional stability is increased, which means the fabric is more robust and keeps its shape also during a lot of&nbsp;cleanses.&nbsp;The characteristics&nbsp;maybe&nbsp;change a lot, but it is very cosy especially as underwear! Furthermore, the cotton gets a shiny like silk and is easier to dye.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The classic wool is gained by shearing of healthy and living sheep. You should look for the Woolmark seal, to be sure that this criterium was&nbsp;fulfilled! It is a very soft and smooth material. But here we are, depending on some parameters, the wool can be also very itchy. Because of the worldwide demand in many kinds of wearables, wool is still considered a low-priced nature product. Different to cotton, wool is a very active material. It can help to regulate the temperature in hot and cold days.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Merino wool is another kind a sheep wool usually from Australia. Because of the longer growing time of the fur, the fibers are thinner and more elastic. The lesser fiber thickness leads to much less problems for many people (more information below). Many fabrics are traded as „next to skin“ and I think this definition is more than correct. Another big advantage is the smell neutrality. You can wear your pullover, shirts, etc. for a long time without washing. Usually you only need to ventilate your merino product for a while and it is fresh again. The general cleaning mania is very questionable and profit oriented. A good wool does not be washed once a week. 3-4 times a year is much more gentle to the material. This counts for all animal wool fabrics!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Alpaca camel wool is one of the most expensive kinds of wool because the very slow growing fur. The camel get sheared only once in 2 years! But you get very light and flexible fibers with an isolating effect. It is perfect for winter wear. In the next part I show you examples of the fiber characteristics and how wool is separated in different quality levels.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Angora rabbit wool is collected by shearing, combing or plucking. Especially the plucking on the living animal is very brutal. That is why the demand of that kind of wool is diminishing in the last years. Of course, the fabric is very warming and fluffy, but also very fuzzy.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Mohair wool is a product of the angora goat. It is the lightest of all kind of wool and very comfy to wear. The refinement process is very complicated and the results are still fuzzy. But the lightness and the high flexibility makes this in my opinion to the best wearable fabric in winter. For warm days I miss the active characteristics of merino wool.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Cashmere is maybe the one with the most well known name, when it comes to name high quality wool. The fibers are collected from the cashmere goat by combining. It has a slight silky touch and is most used together with other fabrics. It is very light and thin. It also has high warming capabilities.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://goodmorninggloucester.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/wool_fibers.jpg" alt="wool"/></p><p><br/></p><h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 24.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The parameters</h3><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The most interesting parameters in the&nbsp;context of itch and scratch are the fiber length and fiber strength. The quality of the spin process and specific refinements are the secondary parameters, but still with a big influence on the wear experience.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The fibre length is meant to be the real length of a fiber before any refinements or the spinning process. It seems that the length is important to create a yarn which is consistent in shape and roughness over the full yarn length. Are the fibers too short, you can get a rough feeling on your skin, but doesn’t have to be itchy.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">My experience over the last years taught&nbsp;me, that the fiber strength (or thickness) is the most important factor. It is pretty easy. If the fiber is too thick, bigger than 25 µm, then the fabric gets itchy. This is directly connected to the flexibility of the fiber, because the itchiness is mostly an irritation of your skin. It is the contact with a fiber which is not elastic enough to bend.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">To give you an overview about the dimensions I use the example of alpaca wool and how it is offered on the market. These fiber thickness values are given in Micron. It is meant to be the same like µm.</p><ul style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; padding: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; margin-left: 25px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" class=" list-paddingleft-2"><li><p>Royal: &lt;19 Micron</p></li><li><p>Baby: 22 Micron</p></li><li><p>Superfine: 25.5 Micron</p></li><li><p>Suri: 27 Micron</p></li><li><p>Adult: 27.5 Micron</p></li><li><p>Huarizo: 32 Micron</p></li><li><p>Llama: 34 Micron</p></li><li><p>Coarse: 36 Micron</p></li></ul><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">This overview should help you to find the right fabrics.&nbsp;For your orientation, some people experience the superine grade as already itchy!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">To summarize both of these characteristics: The fiber length and strength are leading to the ability of bending. If the fiber is too short, it easily gets stiff and creates an itchy feeling. Same counts for an increased fiber strength. In extreme cases this can lead to skin irritation!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">By the way, the receptors on your skin to feel itchy are different ones then for example the ones for pain! The itch and scratch mechanism is an&nbsp;important reaction of the body to protect the organism of small but maybe harmful particles.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">How many times did you scratched yourself by reading this article? I would bet not more than me during the writing… It is a normal reflex to be much more sensitive for itches during thinking about itches!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Have a scratchy day!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Jan</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 24.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">References</h3><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Wool:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="https://www.britannica.com/topic/wool" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">https://www.britannica.com/topic/wool</a></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><em style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Britannica.</em>&nbsp;Vol. 12, P. 746 f.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Sweat and Smell:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Lundström, Johan N.; Olsson, Mats J. (2010). „Functional Neuronal Processing of Human Body Odors“.&nbsp;<em style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Pheromones</em>. Academic Press</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Merino wool:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="https://www.numei.com/about-merino-wool.html" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">https://www.numei.com/about-merino-wool.html</a></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">https://www.bergzeit.de/magazin/merinowolle-materialkunde-die-funktion-der-faser-im-ueberblick/</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Alpaca:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">http://www.pacomarca.com/alpaca-basic-information.html</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">General:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">http://fiberarts.org/design/articles/mercerized.html</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="https://baumwollboerse.de/informationen/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">https://baumwollboerse.de/informationen/</a></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">wikipedia.org</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">My own experience</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Itch and Scratch:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3170689/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3170689/</a></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; max-width: 100%;">Title:</strong></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">By 4028mdk09 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons</p><p><br/></p>

comments: 0
2020-10-3

Where to study Biomimetics i

<p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Dear readers.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Before we start our summer break, we’d like to write a short update on our successful article series ‚Where to study Biomimetics in Europe‘. In case you have not yet read the first two parts, here are the links to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.blogionik.org/study-biomimetics-europe/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Part 1</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.blogionik.org/part-2-study-biomimetics-europe/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Part 2</a>. We have the feeling, our series is a unique collection of possibilities to study Biomimetics in Europe and therefore we’d like to keep you updated on new courses, we found out about. And additionally, we think it’s important to inform about changes and new information about some courses – for example the Master program ‚Bionik/ Biomimetics in Energy Systems‘ in Villach, which Jan wrote about two weeks ago (find link&nbsp;<a href="http://www.blogionik.org/the-current-state-of-biomimetics-in-austria/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">here</a>).</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Today though, we are presenting three (at least to us) new opportunities to study Biomimetics in Europe:</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">In Kufstein/ Tirol (Austria) you can study&nbsp;<a href="https://www.fh-kufstein.ac.at/Studieren/Post-Graduate-Weiterbildung/Bio-Inspired-Engineering" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Bio Inspired Engineering</a>&nbsp;at the University of Applied Sciences. The course is for post-graduates, meaning a Bachelor degree in technical or natural sciences and at least three years of working experience are required for admission. Additionally you need an English certificate, because the course is taught in English (find all details on the website). Besides ‚pure‘ Biomimetics, the Master program focuses on teaching technical principles to apply Biomimetics, biology basics for engineers and of course a detailed research project: the Master thesis. The course is brand new and starts with its first students in November 2017. It is a great opportunity for students of middle Europe who are interested in Biomimetics and a great step forward for the Biomimetics community in Austria. You can still apply until the end of October – so maybe this would be interesting for you?</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">At the University of Pisa (Italy) the Master program&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bionicsengineering.it/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Bionics Engineering</a>&nbsp;is running since 2015. It is a two years study course as a joint project of the University of Pisa (UNIPI) and the Scoula Superiore Sant‘ Anna (SSSA) in Pisa. It runs under the heading of ‚Biomedical engineering‘ – so robotics and Biomimetics in the medical field are a major focus here. The program consist of many different modules – some are compulsory and some elective – in the first year, for example ‚Biomechanics of human motion‘, ‚Bioinspired computational methods‘ or ‚Electronics for bionics engineering‘. In the second year of the program, you can choose between the curriculum ‚Neural engineering‘ or the curriculum ‚Biorobotics‘ to gain more specific know-how. Besides this interesting selection of modules, I guess the Tuscany is not the worst place to spend a few years of your life.&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">From Austria and Italy, let’s take a look at Great Britain – or more specifically the University of Bristol in southern England. Here, no ‚pure‘ Biomimetics course exists, but two Master programs have Biomimetics as an optional focus in the curriculum. The first one is the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bristol.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/2017/eng/msc-adv-composites/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">MSc Advanced Composites,&nbsp;</a>running for one year and starting in September. It has the optional unit to focus on ‚Nature’s Materials: Biomimetics, Biomaterials and Sustainability‘. The course is based on the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bristol.ac.uk/composites/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Advanced Composites Centre for Innovation and Science</a>&nbsp;and has many industrial contacts – so this is really something for students who want to work in the applied sciences. To be accepted in this course, you need an upper second-class honours degree (or an equivalent) in an engineering discipline.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">A second interesting Master program at the University of Bristol is the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bris.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/2017/eng/msc-robotics/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">MSc Robotics&nbsp;</a>with courses on ‚Bio-inspired artificial intelligence‘, ‚Biomechanics‘ or ‚Advanced techniques in multidisciplinary design‘. Like the MSc Advances Composites you can fulfill the program in one year full-time, but here you also have the possibility to study part-time for two years. As the name says, focus of the program are robotic systems and the course is situated at the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.brl.ac.uk/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(255, 255, 255); max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; margin-left: 2px; margin-right: 4px; position: relative; padding: 0px 5px; line-height: 26px; background-color: rgb(176, 109, 7); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Bristol Robotics Laboratory</a>. Also here you need an upper second-class honours degree (or an equivalent) in engineering or alternatively in physics, mathematics or a related subject. Also students from other disciplines can be considered – just check out the website and get in touch with the program staff.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">So, I think those three programs with a direct or optional link to Biomimetics are especially interesting for undergraduates of engineering disciplines who did already work and would like to get even more qualified with an additional degree.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Do you maybe already have some experiences with some of the mentioned courses?</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Or did our post maybe lead you to applying for one of them and you will start to study one of the Master courses this year? We would be highly interested in hearing your experiences!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Of course we are always happy to get some hints to other options to study Biomimetics in Europe, we did not yet blog about. Part 4 is hopefully coming soon and if you have any suggestions for this article series, please do not hesitate to contact us via mail, a comment or facebook.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Thank you very much!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Repost from&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="https://blogionik.org/blog/2017/08/02/part-3-study-biomimetics-europe/#comments" style="font-family: sans-serif; font-size: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(154, 154, 154); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Keine Kommentare</a>.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><br/></p>

comments: 0
2020-10-3

Theme session: “Energy stora

<p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Dear readers, we are starting a new theme session, which will be dedicated to &nbsp;“energy storage”. Our focus will be on presenting different strategies in living organisms that nature developed in order to store energy. Types of energy, their purpose and working mechanisms are topics&nbsp;you can expect to read about in the next weeks, based on some interesting examples.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Firstly, I will resume some very basic physical laws about energy. Energy is the property of an object to perform work or to heat it. It can be transformed from one form to another but cannot be created or destroyed. The international unit is the Joule (J). Common forms are mechanical, potential, elastic, chemical, radiant and thermal energy.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><h2 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 31.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased;">Why is energy needed?</strong></h2><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Energy &nbsp;enables natural processes to run on different levels – from atomic to universal scale.&nbsp;Living organisms require energy principally to stay alive and they get it by taking up food/ nutrients. The whole civilization gets the energy it needs from sources like fossil fuels, nuclear fuel or renewable energy. Earth’s climatic and ecological processes are driven by the radiant energy received from the sun and the geothermal energy from the Earth’s interior.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Life would be easy, if the energy we need would continuously be available. Since this is not the case, some kind of energy storage is required. This means that the energy is captured in different forms for a later use. Some forms provide short-term storage while others can endure for much longer. And exactly these facts are the point of interest for Biomimetics. How nature deals with the challenge of energy storage&nbsp;and what are possible inspirations for&nbsp;technological development.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><h2 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 31.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased;">Energy rich molecules</strong></h2><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">For many animals, finding food continuously is not possible, therefore the only strategy (besides storing the food itself) is to eat whenever the food is available and store is as fat inside the body. Hibernating animals must enlarge their adipose tissue before winter in order to survive without eating. Similarly, green photosynthetic plants growing in hot regions, or those who drop their leaves and become dormant, also need to have stored food to maintain their lifecycle. Without some nutrient reserves inside, a leafless plant would not even be able to produce new leaves and would simply die.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Humans and animals store energy mainly as fat in adipose tissues within the body. Energy from fats (triglycerides) is obtained by breaking the&nbsp;covalent bonds during the degradation process where many ATP molecules are formed (ATP = adenosine triphosphate, a molecule responsible for intracellular energy transfer). A smaller amount is stored as glucose and glycogen in blood, muscles and livers but that is only enough for a few hours of physical activity. Plants, on the other hand, store starch instead. Why this difference? There are two main reasons – mobility and stability. The energy storing molecule should not be too heavy and must be stable for a longer period within the plant/ animal’s body. Because animals are moving, is fat a perfect storage tissue. One unit of fat stores much more energy than one unit of carbohydrate or protein [1]. Plants do not move so weight saving is not a necessity. The heavier starch molecule is more stable than the lighter fat molecule, which enable the plants to store starch over years or decades. Fat would become moldy if exposed to oxygen, so it is useless for plants. Well, not completely useless – seeds contain quite some quantities of oils but they are relatively small compared to the plant.</p><h2 style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin: 10px 0px; font-family: Merriweather, serif; font-weight: 400; line-height: 40px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizelegibility; font-size: 31.5px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased;">Mechanical energy</strong></h2><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">As mentioned before, with the work of muscles fuelled by food, animals can move around. But this is not the only way. Nature developed different systems in order to exploit energy transfer for several purposes – jumping, accelerating, feeding, etc. Maybe the most known example is a hopping kangaroo, which conserves energy by using elastic mechanism in its tendons. When a force is applied to a tendon/ string, it bends and stores energy in the form of elastic strain energy. And when it recoils after the force has been released, this energy is released as well. Therefore, a kangaroo is more efficient by jumping as running, since it consumes less energy that way.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Skeletal systems with tendons can act as power amplifiers, too, by storing energy gradually and releasing it rapidly. The process of amplification begins when a muscle contracts steadily, storing elastic strain energy in the tendon. Once the energy is completely stored, the tendon releases it in a very short time span, which increases the power significantly. Nice examples are flees – being able to leap a distance of some 50 times their body length. Or a click beetle, jumping up high even without legs. Further examples are chameleon’s tongue, frog’s legs…..all using stored elastic energy for acceleration.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">But not to forget plants! I mentioned in the previous section that plants do not move in the sense of changing locations. Plants themselves not, but their seeds do. It is impressive to investigate all kinds of seed spreading techniques that nature developed, but my focus is more on using the stored energy for this purpose. One of them will be presented in the following weeks – the popping see pods. They use their internal pressure in order to contract and generate tension required for the explosion. But more about that soon.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">Energy storage is a wide topic.&nbsp;In the upcoming&nbsp;articles we hope to give you an insight into naturals mechanisms which you may not know so far. Therefore, follow us on BlogIONIK!</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);"><br/></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; font-size: 18px; line-height: 2; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">References:</p><ul style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; padding: 0px; margin-bottom: 10px; margin-left: 25px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; white-space: normal; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" class=" list-paddingleft-2"><li><p>[1]&nbsp;<a href="https://www.med.upenn.edu/biocbiop/faculty/vanderkooi/chap7-9.pdf" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(0, 140, 35); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Making and storing fat and retrieving it to supply energy</a></p></li><li><p>Photos:&nbsp;<a href="https://www.facebook.com/A-K-photography-1420232784860308/" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(0, 140, 35); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">A K Photography</a></p></li></ul><p><br/></p><p>Repost from&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="https://blogionik.org/blog/2017/04/13/theme-session-energy-storage/#comments" style="box-sizing: border-box; -webkit-font-smoothing: antialiased; color: rgb(154, 154, 154); text-decoration-line: none !important; transition: none 0s ease 0s !important; transform: none !important;">Keine Kommentare</a></p><p><br/></p>

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