Biomimicry with the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
What is Biomimicry?
Great question! Biomimicry is the process of using concepts and ideas drawn from nature to solve complex problems. Whilst Biomimicry has only been studied as a discipline in the last half century, Biomimics can draw on the knowledge and wisdom of nature that has been developed over billions of years.
Biomimicry can be applied in a number of different fields, including architecture, engineering, and design. By looking to nature for inspiration, we are able to draw on an infinite number of possibilities to create elegant, pragmatic and sustainable solutions.
The complex problem solving that is engaged in when utilising Biomimicry in learning, aids in student development and supports a number of curriculum outcomes across multiple disciplines. The practise of Biomimicry provides “a rich framework for teaching that can be used to address a wide range of topics in science, engineering, sustainability and environmental literacy” (Biomimicry Institute, 2017), which makes Biomimicry an ideal STEM framework and The Gardens an ideal STEM laboratory.
Biomimicry in action
A great example of how biomimicry can be used to when problem solving can be seen in the design of the Shinkansen Bullet Train. Eiji Nakatsu, a Japanese engineer (who also happened to be an avid bird watcher) was inspired by the bill of a kingfisher.
The unique tip of the bill provided the idea to redesign the nose of the Shinkansen Bullet Train. This solved a number of problems, including reducing the amount of noise the train would make and enabling it to travel at much higher speeds.
Learn Biomimicry with Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
The Designed by Nature learning program offers students an opportunity to explore the process of biomimicry, and apply this knowledge in a problem solving context.
Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria offer the program in a number of formats for both Primary and Secondary students.