Toucan beaks, the original composite sandwich

1 year 6 months ago #37010 by MCImes
Cool article I came across
jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/news/news_releases/release.sfe?id=417

Basically shows how the Toucan beak is more or less a foam core composite sandwich with dense bone acting as the skin and closed cell, air filled foam like bone core, very similar construction to our strong and light boats.

The really interesting part - "The study in Acta Materialia also noted a hollow region extending ab out half the length of the upper and lower beaks. "When we did the calculations, we discovered that there are only very insignificant mechanical stresses in the center of the beak at the position of the hollow areas," said Meyers. "This is why I jokingly tell my students that toucans have a deep knowledge of mechanics. They don't bother adding structural support in a part of the beak that doesn't really need it."

So the inner beak is completely hollow just like our skis. If I was a caveman in prehistoric times, maybe I could have ski'd on a dinosaur Toucan beak... Like Tarzan, but on the water!

Currently paddling a Kai Wa'a Vega Flex in Southern California's ocean waters
Past Boats: Epic V10g1, Stellar SRg1, Fenn XTg1, Swordfish S
"When you've done something right, they wont know you've done anything at all"

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1 year 6 months ago #37020 by Arcturus
The first paragraph’s comment about “finding toucan beaks on the forest floor” snagged me longer than it should have. I am still imagining what it would be like to find one, when really it is no weirder than finding deer skulls around my property.

The structure could be useful for making lightweight, strong, and probably expensive enclosed trailers that have built-in insulation.

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