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Ministry of Education.
Kaua e rangiruatia te hāpai o te hoe; e kore to tātou waka e ū ki uta

Camouflage sheet inspired by octopus

24 August 2014


Based on the camouflage abilities of octopuses and cuttlefish, engineers in the US have built a flexible material that changes colour to match its surroundings.

The new design features a grid of 1mm cells, containing a temperature-driven dye that switches colour on demand. So far it only responds in black-and-white, but the team hopes that the principles of their design will have commercial and military applications.

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Discussion starters

  • Technological products: Use this to discuss examples of the formulation of new materials and explain the underpinning concepts and processes involved in their development. (level 8)
  • Characteristics of technology: Use this and other examples to explain how different disciplines have impacted on technological practice. (level 6)


Image courtesy of Victor Habbick/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Keywords: octopus, material, camouflage, characteristics of technology, technological products, biomimicry

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