View Full Version : Switchable Adhesives

07-26-2007, 03:30 PM
More examples of the study of biology leading to new technologies (in this case from geckos or insects that can demonstrate switchable adhesion):


"Two surfaces stick together, separate, and stick together again—on command. This discovery by a team of researchers from the Universities of Sheffield (UK) and Bayreuth contradicts our day-to-day experience.

n the animal kingdom, geckos can climb up vertical inclines, displaying an incredible switchable adhesion as they do so. Insects also use another form of switchable adhesion to sit on your ceiling and then fly off before you climb up on your chair with a rolled-up newspaper. How these animals can switch off and on adhesion is not yet understood in detail. But the scientists led by Mark Geoghegan reveal the secret of their “intelligent” adhesion in the journal Angewandte Chemie."

I can think of a lot of applications of this. You can hang practically any object without using nails for example, or climb any wall or hang from a ceiling just like insects (gotta be fun if you think about it).

Oh, and I'm sure the military would make good use of it too.