Bioinspired multifunctional materials
Virtual talk by assistant Prof. Hortense Le Ferrand on August 13th
Natural materials are multifunctional. Consider the simple shell of a gastropod: it evolved to achieve balance during locomotion, protection against predation and dehydration, storage of mineral, anchoring structure for muscle. And what is fascinating is that all this is realised using 95% of calcium carbonate. As a comparison, the engineered equivalent of a mollusc shell would be chalk, a material with very low functionalities. The key difference between natural and most engineered materials is the intricate microstructures in which the building blocks are arranged. Developing the tools to translate these microstructures into engineered materials would allow us to better understand microstructure-properties relationships. Ultimately, this could create new sets of materials with unique combinations of properties.
Dr. Hortense Le Ferrand is assistant professor at the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and at the School of Materials Science and Engineering at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. She is also part of the Singapore Centre for 3D Printing.
The talk is embedded in a series of virtual talks on hot topics in materials science organized by the MPIE.