An international team of researchers, coordinated by the University of Milan and with the collaboration of the ICMATE Institute, studied how the leaf of the carnivorous plant Drosera Capensis is able to bend when it is stimulated, for example, with a drop of milk. The interdisciplinary approach has combined biophysical studies with structural microscopy of the leaf, quantitative analysis of factors such as auxin involved in cell growth and computer simulations that allowed the creation of a metamaterial that encompasses all biological properties observed in the plant. This study, in addition to allowing the creation of a new metamaterial, led to the understanding of the mechanism used by the leaf to bend over the prey, correlating it to the structural properties of the cells that make up the leaf itself.
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Marco Musiani, research director at ICMATE CNR Padova, has been appointed Honorary Member of the International Society of Electrochemistry (ISE) by the Executive Committee of the Society, which has approved a proposal of the seven ISE Presidents in charge from 2005 to 2018. ISE Honorary Members are appointed primarily in recognition of their contribution to the Society. The ISE By-Laws limit to ten their maximum number, at any time.
The definition of the authenticity of artworks has undergone a slow process of development: with time, connoisseurship — the traditional practice of attributing detailed artistic identities to works of art on the basis of a comparative analysis of stylistic and formal components — has lost its position of technical leadership. In fact, currently, trust in the expert eye is increasingly subjected to the “objective” outcomes ensured by new and more rigorous techniques of scientific analysis of materials. However, this approach risks being somewhat reductive and incomplete.
THIS WEEK'S HIGHLIGHTS
ICMATE in Padova has various apparatus for the deposition of thin films by three distinct PVD systems (Physical Vapor Deposition) for Magnetron Sputtering: a) a multi-confocal magnetron, b) a multi-magnetron multi-layer, which may both work in either mode DC- both RF- Magnetron Sputtering (DC and RF-MS), and c) an innovative system High Power Impulse Magnetron Sputtering (HIPIMS).
The research is based on the characterization of metallic materials through high resolution electron microscopy and micro-analytical techniques. The investigated materials are mainly devoted to applications for energy production and components for high temperature and extreme conditions (Milan branch), and metal functional materials (Lecco branch).
Biomedical fabrics with antibacterial or, more generally, therapeutic purposes are a challenging manufacturing task in textile industries. From one side, the fabric itself hosts the bacteria acting as a medium between the human organism and the microorganisms; on the other hand, it is regarded as a well assessed tool for drug delivery in contact of skin for external applications.