Discovering Engineering Design Templates in Nature’s Transducers

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Nature uses a plethora of micro and nano-scale sensors in its creations. While many of such sensors and actuators have been identified and studied for their functions in animals and insects, we are only beginning to discover the underlying design templates that Nature uses and creates multiple variants of the design with parameter tweaking. Understanding such design templates is essential as they often contain natural scaling of underlying transduction principles and their implementation with physical designs. The modern tools of imaging and characterization are making the discovery of these design templates possible as we are now able to construct the whole system from the information on its pieces from biological studies and piece-together simulations that tell us the whole story. We have been studying the bioacoustics of crickets in order to understand transducer design for efficient sound amplification as well as directional sound detection. We have been also studying insect halteres as gyroscopes to see how such a simple design lends itself to a 3-axis rate of rotation sensing. This talk contains some details of these studies that are targeted at discovering the underlying engineering design and a more generic design template of Nature’s transducers.



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  • Date: 08 Oct 2020
  • Time: 03:30 PM to 04:30 PM
  • All times are (UTC+10:00) Sydney
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  • Sydney, New South Wales
  • Australia 2109

  • Co-sponsored by Prof. Subhas Mukhopadhyay


  Speakers

Prof. Rudra Pratap

Topic:

Discovering Engineering Design Templates in Nature’s Transducers

 

Nature uses a plethora of micro and nano-scale sensors in its creations. While many of such sensors and actuators have been identified and studied for their functions in animals and insects, we are only beginning to discover the underlying design templates that Nature uses and creates multiple variants of the design with parameter tweaking. Understanding such design templates is essential as they often contain natural scaling of underlying transduction principles and their implementation with physical designs. The modern tools of imaging and characterization are making the discovery of these design templates possible as we are now able to construct the whole system from the information on its pieces from biological studies and piece-together simulations that tell us the whole story. We have been studying the bioacoustics of crickets in order to understand transducer design for efficient sound amplification as well as directional sound detection. We have been also studying insect halteres as gyroscopes to see how such a simple design lends itself to a 3-axis rate of rotation sensing. This talk contains some details of these studies that are targeted at discovering the underlying engineering design and a more generic design template of Nature’s transducers.

Biography:

Rudra Pratap (Ph.D., Cornell University, 1993, M.S., University of Arizona, 1987, B.Tech., IIT Kharagpur, 1985) is a professor at the Centre for Nano Science and Engineering (CeNSE), and Deputy Director of IISc Bangalore. He is also an associate faculty of Mechanical Engineering, IISc, where he served full time until 2010 when he moved to CeNSE as the Founding Chairperson. He joined IISc in 1996 after teaching at the Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, for almost three years. For the last 20 years, he has worked in the area of Micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) and dynamics of micro and nano-scale systems. His research interests include MEMS and NEMS, vibroacoustics, bioacoustics, mechano-biology, and computational mechanics. He has published approximately 200 papers in journals and conference proceedings. He is author or co-author of three books. He is an Associate Editor of IEEE/ASME Journal of MEMS and Journal of ISSS. He is an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering and National Academy of Science, India, and a Distinguished Lecturer of the IEEE Sensors Council.