The Best Biomimicry Examples

Countless inventors and designers throughout history have been inspired by nature. Here you find a few extraordinary examples of applied bionics. Which do you find most impressive?

Shinkansen bullet train in Japan
The Shinkansen bullet trains are a prime example of biomimicry.


Bio-Inspired Highspeed Trains in Japan

The Shinkansen bullet trains had become too fast for the tunnels and track structures. Therefore, the shock wave of air its plan forefront caused had to be reduced.

By observing the splash-less water entry of the kingfisher bird, engineers were able to solve the issue and even increase efficiency.

  • Sonic boom causing structure collapse and inefficiency
  • Bio-inspiration from kingfisher bird
  • Nose geometry adjusted after beak of the kingfisher
  • Result: 10% faster, 15% less electricity used


Biomimetic Anti-Fouling Coating

Fouling caused by microorganisms on ships leads to great economic issues for companies. The diamond-shaped structure of shark skin is used to develop an anti-fouling coating which also increases the speed of ships.

An impressive display of its effectiveness could be witnessed during the 2008 Olympic games when virtually all swimming records were broken by swimmers wearing Speedo’s “shark skin” line.

  • Anti-Fouling: Coating prevents fouling and corrosion of structures.
  • High-Speed: Better aerodynamics lead to increased speed and less resistance.
  • Water Resistant: Layers of skin repel water.
Sharks swimming around rock
Shark skin is a classic source of bioinspiration.


Velcro® Fasteners

Touch fasteners by Velcro® have long been the prime example of bio-inspired design. After noticing how Burdock seeds stick to almost any material, Swiss engineer de Mestral invented the first version of the temporary fasteners that can now be found in clothing, industrial applications, and medical devices.

Burdock flower
The most famous example of biomimicry.

Ready to put your own project on this list?