Img 1 (above): Human fingerprint patterns are created because basal skin grows faster than surface skin, which then buckles, forming ridges .
Img 2 (below): Kuecken developed a mathematical model that can reproduce fingerprint patterns, like this one.
Shipman found that cactus stickers predicatably align in spiral patterns
Patterns in nature can be seen every day, yet in many cases, little is understood about how and why they form. Now University of Arizona mathematicians have found a way to predict natural patterns, including fingerprints and the spirals seen in cacti.
UA graduate student Michael Kuecken developed a mathematical model that can reproduce fingerprint patterns, while UA graduate student Patrick Shipman created a mathematical model to explain the arrangement of repeated units in various plants. Shipman’s report on his work will be published in an upcoming issue of Physical Review Letters.
Even though the use of fingerprints for identification began more than 2000 years ago in China and they have been studied experimentally for over two hundred years, there is no widely accepted explanation for their occurrence. Likewise, the reasons behind nature’s choice of patterns in plants have been difficult for mathematicians to explain, despite these patterns having been identified centuries ago.
Alan C. Newell | University of Arizona
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Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
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