protect from floods
Nature’s refined solutions, mapped to your design challenges.
Surface of wing kills bacteriaclanger cicada
Nanopillars on surface of wing of the clanger cicada kill bacteria by expanding surface area to the point of stretching and ripping.
Sucker attaches to uneven surfacesSharksuckers Or Remoras
Sucker of remora grips uneven surfaces with a combination of suction and friction
Protein binds permanentlyRed Junglefowl
Protein from chicken egg permanently binds vitamin by changing shape
View all Biological Strategies
Design solutions to human challenges, inspired by biological strategies.
i2 Modular CarpetInterfaceFLOR
As-needed tile replacement saves resources
A retrofit for wind turbines that channels incoming wind onto the blades to address root leakage.
Seal Blade low drag airfoilVirtual Interchange for Nature-Inspired Exploration, NASA Glenn Research Center (Vikram Shyam, Adam Wroblewski, Philip Poinsatte, Christopher Snyder), The Ohio State University (Ali Ameri), US Army Research Laboratory (Douglas Thurman )
Undulations in the 3D profile of turbine blades reduce drag.
View all Inspired Ideas
Everything you need to learn and teach about biomimicry and life centered design.
Sort Yourselves OutTom McKeag for BioDream Machine
This active 15-30 min exercise demonstrates, in an experiential way, the principles of self-organization, emergence and feedback. It can also be extended into a design exercise.
What Do We Learn from Good Practices of Biologically Inspired Design in Innovation?Jacques Chirazi, Kristina Wanieck, Pierre-Emmanuel Fayemi, Cordt Zollfrank and Shoshanah Jacobs
This article in Applied Sciences describes success factors for biologically-inspired design solutions, from the design process to the commercialization process, based on case studies and market analyses of biologically inspired products
The Rise of BiodesignMary Polites
To provide insight to the process of bio-inspiration, this collection of work shines light on the educational methods currently being explored in China's top institutions
View all Resources
Themed clusters of strategies, ideas, and resources, curated by you.
A growing collection of content created by our talented and dedicated AskNature volunteers
Repel microbes from surfaces
How might we keep surfaces clean and free from contamination?
High performance materials
Nature shows us how structure and composition can make our materials stronger and lighter
View all Collections
How might we …
Here are a few Biological Strategies to get you started …
Photosynthesis converts solar energy into chemical energyplants
Photosynthesis in plants converts solar energy into chemical energy using electrons and protons from water.
Pupil enables clear vision in extreme light conditionsTokay Gecko, ,
The pupil of nocturnal geckos enables clear vision in extreme light conditions by becoming very large at night and constricting to a thin slit with several pinholes during the day.
Hairy legs manipulate sticky web strandsSpinybacked orbweaver, Golden Silk Orbweaver
Leg hairs of orb-weaver spiders enable sticky web manipulation by reducing contact area.
From permaculture to Velcro® to winglets, humans have been looking to nature for inspiration for as long as we’ve been inventing. Inspired Ideas catalog the stories behind realized and conceptual product, service, and system components that have their roots in biology …
The Land Institute permacultureThe Land Institute
Perennial grain cropping mimics natural ecosystem behavior.
Concentrated solar plantMassachusetts Institute of Technology
Optimal arrangement of solar array mirrors based on Fibonacci spirals.
Anti-icing coating prevents frost and ice buildupRykaczewski Research Group, Arizona State University
Coating infused with antifreeze reduces frost and ice accumulation
Interest in biomimicry has skyrocketed over the past decade, and there are now thousands of Resources—including books, articles, videos, lesson plans, groups, training programs, and more—available to folks who want to learn, teach, and practice this valuable problem solving approach. Get started with a few of our favorites here …
Sharing Biomimicry with Young PeopleBiomimicry Institute
An orientation to biomimicry for K-12 teachers and others who work with youth.
The world is poorly designed. But copying nature helps.Vox and 99% Invisible
This 6 minute video introduces biomimicry, the application of biomimicry at different scales, and connections to the circular economy.
Biomimicry Basics: How to Innovate Using Nature’s StrategiesDenise DeLuca
In this 4-hour online course you will learn a step by step method for turning nature's strategies into innovative design solutions using the biomimicry design spiral.
Collections tie together Biological Strategies, Inspired Ideas, and Resources into themes that are often correlated with a particular human challenge, geographic area, or set of environmental conditions. Check out a few of our favorites and then start your own …
Chemistry of Nature
How can we learn from nature to create materials without using life-threatening chemicals and high temperatures?
Solving for a changing climate
The science is clear, and so is our imperative. What can we learn from nature as we design solutions for mitigating, adapting to, and reversing climate change?
Cooling Down In The Heat
From sweating, to panting, to pulling water from air, living systems rely on a number of forms and processes to stay cool and hydrated.
“Nature is constantly innovating, endlessly experimenting and ever reinventing itself in the face of new challenges.
From materials and products to business models, biomimicry offers a fresh lens for all the dreamers and doers remaking the man-made world.”