Rice engineers get a grip with ‘necrobotic’ spiders
Spiders are amazing. They’re useful even when they’re dead.
Rice University mechanical engineers are showing how to repurpose deceased spiders as mechanical grippers that can blend into natural environments while picking up objects, like other insects, that outweigh them.
“It happens to be the case that the spider, after it’s deceased, is the perfect architecture for small scale, naturally derived grippers,” said Daniel Preston of Rice’s George R. Brown School of Engineering.
An open-access study in Advanced Science outlines the process by which Preston and lead author Faye Yap harnessed a spider’s physiology in a first step toward a novel area of research they call “necrobotics.”. (More)