• Question: If you are in academia, what are your thoughts on the efforts to develop biomimetic materials? What impact do you predict from development of nanoscale materials and surfaces on biomedical materials?

    Asked by Bethany K to Simon on 26 Jun 2015.
    • Photo: Simon Marchant

      Simon Marchant answered on 26 Jun 2015:

      Hi! So although I’m not an academic engineer, I thought I’d look into this a bit because I don’t really know anything about it! So, biomimetic doesn’t necessarily mean super-high-tech, you can get some fairly simple things that work based on ideas from nature. Also they’re quite common: forte example you could say that planes’ wings are biomimetic because they often take their shape from successful birds! There’s even a glider in development that takes its shape and strategy from the albatross, which glides without flapping for days! So I think that biomimetic things are fantastic – especially in the medical field where I work because we often want to replace things that humans do (in cases where an illness means they can’t), so mimicry of the real process is often the best way to go! So thanks for asking this question, because it made me think about it hard. 🙂