Entries by Camilla Pandolfi

Inaugurazione Jellyfish Barge

  Oggi, venerdì 31 ottobre, appuntamento ai Navicelli, in via della Darsena 3 a Pisa, per l’inaugurazione del Jellyfish Barge. Interverranno: il sindaco di Pisa, Marco Filippeschi, il presidente della Camera di Commercio, Pierfrancesco Pacini, l’amministratore di Navicelli spa, Giovandomenico Caridi, il presidente onorario dell’Accademia dei Georgofili, Franco Scaramuzzi e Marco Bellandi, pro-rettore al trasferimento tecnologico […]

Super-material shrugs off molten metal

On Nature News by Elizabeth Gibney Surfaces that repel water existed already,  but now scientists have engineered materials that speed up the bounce to repel water faster. Video: Stay dry with a bounce References: Bird, J. C., Dhiman, R., Kwon, H.-M. & Varanasi, K. K. Nature 503, 385–388 (2013).

Colors and plants

Surfing the web I found this interesting collection of plants, used to dye fabrics: Alkanet: Alkanna tinctoria family Boraginaceae with a bright blue flower, used to provide a red dye. Annatto: Bixa orellana A yellow dye. The plant is also grown for ornament or hedging and used medicinally. Brazilwood: Caesalpinia echinata A species of Brazilian […]

One espresso please…

Why do plants produce caffeine in the nectar? This is indeed an intriguing question! Check out this nice post on the flowering newsletter, and here some related papers: Adler LS. (2000), The ecological significance of toxic nectar. Oikos, 91: 409–420. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-0706.2000.910301.x Chittka L and Peng F. Caffeine Boosts Bees’ Memories. Sciences. 2013. Vol. 339 […]


The International Laboratory on Plant Neurobiology is looking for smart and motivated researchers in different fields of plant biology: cellular and structural biology, plant development, regulation and growth, environmental and stress physiology, plant tropisms and circadian rhythms, molecular biology, microbe-plant interaction, nutrition, bio-VOC, biomimetics, plant bio-mechanics and much more. HOW TO APPLY Applicants should send their CV […]

Innovative biomimetic materials inspired by plants

Robin Seidel, Tom Masselter, Olga Speck, Thomas Speck Plant Biomechanics Group Freiburg, Botanic Garden, Faculty of Biology, University of Freiburg Title: Innovative biomimetic materials inspired by plants Abstract Bio-inspired materials are becoming of major interest in light-weight constructions, enhanced materials (e.g. self-x-materials), functionalized surfaces and interfaces as well as in architecture. The main difference of […]

The amazing world of carnivorous plants

Carnivorous plants trap and utilize animals in order to improve their supply with mineral nutrients. The complete process of prey utilization comprises four steps: 1. Attraction (using optical signals, scents or nectar) 2. Retention (using specialized leaves) 3. Degradation (by digesting the pray with enzymes) and 4. Uptake the soluble compounds. All the plants that […]

Robotics and ICT technologies inspired by plants

Barbara Mazzolai Centre for Micro-BioRobotics@SSSA, Pontedera, Italy Title: Robotics and ICT technologies inspired by plants Abstract Plants have evolved very robust growth behaviours (tropisms) to respond to changes in their environment and a network of highly sensorized branching roots to efficiently explore the soil volume, mining minerals and up-taking water. In the root apparatus, each […]

Fibre hierarchies in plants: the key to smart solutions

George Jeronimidis Centre for Biomimetics, University of Reading (UK) Title: Fibre hierarchies in plants: the key to smart solutions Abstract Plants do not have a nervous system and they do not have means of locomotion. These constraints mean that plants are dependent on specialised mechanisms for survival in their environments, static or dynamic. The mechanical […]