Next Gen Fighter AirCrafts Inspired by Bats

Published on May 04, 2015 18:43:43 PM
Technology

Isn’t it interesting to know that the next generation fighter aircrafts design is inspired from the Bats? Are you aware that bats have sensors on their wings which help them to do ultimate stunts in mid-night?

The wings of bat consists of a unique array of sensory receptors that give feedback to them while flying, says a new study.

"Humans cannot currently build aircrafts that match the agility of bats, so a better grasp of these processes could inspire new aircraft design and new sensors for monitoring airflow," said co-senior study author Ellen Lumpkin from the Columbia University.

The researchers say that Bats respond to the incoming airflow and touch signals that trigger alteration in position of wings for optimizing its flight control.

"This study provides evidence that the sense of touch plays a key role in the evolution of powered flight in mammals," Lumpkin said. "This research also lays the groundwork for understanding what sensory information bats use to perform such remarkable feats when flying through the air and catching insects," the researcher added.

To get prey while flying, Bats have to integrate different types of sensory information. The researchers identified that the microscopic wing hair stimulated by airflow, are vital for the flight behaviors like controlling speed, turning. Still it is not yet known how bats use their wing’s feedback to control flight behavior.

The wings of Bats have unique hair follicles and touch sensitive receptors, that will pass different sensory information to the brain, researchers said.

"While sensory cells located between the 'fingers' could respond to skin stretch and changes in wind direction, another set of receptors associated with hairs could be specialised for detecting turbulent airflow during flight," said co-author Susanne Sterbing-D'Angelo from the Johns Hopkins University.

The study was published in the journal Cell Reports.