Julian Francis Vincent Vincent

Julian Francis Vincent Vincent
Heriot-Watt University · School of Mechanical Engineering

MA PhD DSc MIMMM CEng FIMechE

About

251
Publications
125,119
Reads
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11,429
Citations
Additional affiliations
October 1968 - September 2000
University of Reading
Position
  • Lecturer and Senior Lecturer

Publications

Publications (251)
Article
Full-text available
Botanical nastic systems demonstrate non-directional structural responses to stimuli such as pressure, light, chemicals or temperature; hygronasty refers to systems that respond specifically to moisture. Many seed dispersal mechanisms such as wheat awns, legume pods, spruce and pinecones fall within this classification. The variety of behaviours va...
Conference Paper
Nature has inspired various groundbreaking technological developments in applications ranging from robotics to aerospace engineering and the manufacturing of medical devices. However, accessing the information captured in scientific biology texts is a time-consuming and hard task that requires domain-specific knowledge. Improving access for outside...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Nature has inspired various groundbreaking technological developments in applications ranging from robotics to aerospace engineering and the manufacturing of medical devices. However, accessing the information captured in scientific biology texts is a time-consuming and hard task that requires domain-specific knowledge. Improving access for outside...
Preprint
Full-text available
Nature has inspired various ground-breaking technological developments in applications ranging from robotics to aerospace engineering and the manufacturing of medical devices. However, accessing the information captured in scientific biology texts is a time-consuming and hard task that requires domain-specific knowledge. Improving access for outsid...
Preprint
Full-text available
Information Extraction (IE) from scientific texts can be used to guide readers to the central information in scientific documents. But narrow IE systems extract only a fraction of the information captured, and Open IE systems do not perform well on the long and complex sentences encountered in scientific texts. In this work we combine the output of...
Article
Full-text available
Function is a key central concept to the practice of biomimicry. Many published models of the biomimicry process include steps to identify, understand, and translate function of biological systems. Examples include functional modeling, decomposition, or abstraction with tools specifically designed to facilitate such steps. A functional approach to...
Article
Full-text available
Computer-Aided Biomimetics (CAB) tools aim to support the integration of relevant biological knowledge into biomimetic problem-solving processes. Specific steps of biomimetic processes that require support include the identification, selection and abstraction of relevant biological analogies. Existing CAB tools usually aim to support these steps by...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
When solving engineering problems through biomimetic design, a lack of knowledge of biology often impedes the translation of biological ideas into engineering principles. Specific challenges are the identification, selection and abstraction of relevant biological information. The use of engineering terminology to search for relevant biological info...
Book
The book explores different pathways of experimenting with biology and architecture in the new field of Living Architecture. It takes architectural visions of a selfgrowing house and looks at growth patterns and dynamics from nature to apply them to architectural visions. The book presents ideas, approaches and concepts for grown structures develop...
Chapter
Full-text available
The interface between biology and technology is well visited but bereft of theory. TRIZ is well suited to bridging such an interface but similarly lacks coherent theory, although it can be shown to work. In the absence of theory and associated numerical models, a semantic model has been developed by means of an ontology. The differences between the...
Article
Full-text available
Biology is gradually yielding lessons and ideas for technology, but the resulting innovation is adventitious. Biology is also very complex: currently with no underlying analytical model and so cannot adequately be interrogated by technologists. A concept which can bridge this gap is the trade-off, which leads to speciation in biology and aspects of...
Article
Full-text available
Phenotypic similarity between unrelated organisms, known as convergence, is a result of shared problems of adaptation to similar environments and limited ecological range. Their separate genetic histories imply a developmental route to biological innovation. Convergence as a model of evolutionary change has been applied to biological evolutionary r...
Article
Full-text available
In a brief review of aspects of biology relevant to architectural design, a number of biological organisms are considered, delivering design ideas for the improvement of tree structures in the Sagrada Familia; better insulation (ideas from penguin feathers and birds’ nests) and cooling of buildings in a hot climate; light but stiff floor plates (de...
Chapter
Full-text available
Statistical analysis of the mechanisms and processes in biological organisms (derived from published, peer-reviewed, research papers) reveals that there are ‘design’ rules which could be used to facilitate technical design, thus producing biologically inspired design without the necessity for the designer using such a system to invoke biology or bi...
Chapter
For many years I wondered how one can transfer ideas from biology to engineering. In the initial stages, at the University of Reading, I would sit with George Jeronimidis and we would take an idea (perhaps a problem posed by someone from industry, or by a student) and we would translate the ideas into each other’s domain. George would simplify the...
Article
SummaryA modification to the knife mounting of a histological microtome is described which can sense the load on the knife when a section is being cut. The performance of this microtome is described in general terms. The variation in force on the knife can be used to give information about the texture of the sample being cut.
Article
This short review, some of it covering work not otherwise published in a peer-reviewed journal, is not meant to be exhaustive but rather to highlight some mechanical influences of holes that are apparently not much used in engineering. Apart from initiating fracture, holes can, if judiciously placed and of the right dimensions, improve the durabili...
Chapter
The mechanical design of plants is based on the tensile properties of cellulose molecules which combine to form stiff nanofibrils from which the wall surrounding all plant cells is mainly constructed. Simple plants such as liverworts are made from few cell types and rely for their stiffness on the osmotically maintained pressure (turgor) of water i...
Article
Bioprospecting is the exploration of biodiversity for new resources of social and commercial value. It is carried out by a wide range of established industries such as pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and agriculture as well as a wide range of comparatively new ones such as aquaculture, bioremediation, biomining, biomimetic engineering and nanotechno...
Article
The texture of apple flesh is important in assessing its eating qualities. The texture in turn is related to the structure of the parenchyma. The parenchyma cells of the fruit are arranged in radial quasi-columnar form with radial spaces in between. This anisotropy has a marked effect on the fracture properties such that it is much easier to drive...
Article
Although its morphology is complex, the mechanical properties of the flesh of apples can be understood qualitatively in terms of the way the cells are assembled. There is no quantitative model for structures of turgescent cells which are not totally adherent.
Article
Results and experiences with four field-course experiments are described. Three use fresh-water organisms and explore the responses of animals to flow rate of water and the relationship between size and speed of locomotion. The fourth uses the mathematics of fractals in an analysis of size effects in insect populations. Each project took 10–15 stud...
Article
The textural properties of potato tubers influence their acceptability and palatability and these properties differ between varieties, groups and progeny. The aim of this study was to compare the textural properties of cooked tubers of Solanum tuberosum group Phureja with those of group Tuberosum. To assess intra-tuber differences, the textural pro...
Article
The use of oscillating flexible fins in propulsion has been the subject of several studies in recent years, but attention is rarely paid to the specific role of stiffness profile in thrust production. Stiffness profile is defined as the variation in local chordwise bending stiffness (EI) of a fin, from leading to trailing edge. In this study, flexi...
Article
Full-text available
Current trends in surgical intervention favour a minimally invasive approach, in which complex procedures are performed through very small incisions. Specifically, in neurosurgery there is a need for minimally invasive keyhole access, which conflicts with the lack of manoeuvrability of conventional rigid instruments. In an attempt to address this s...
Article
Potato crisps were ranked in order of crispness by a taste panel. The crisps were then tested mechanically, using Weibull’s model for the analysis of the data. This showed that a crisper crisp breaks at a higher force. The speed of breakdown of the crisp during chewing is proportional to the Weibull modulus. The Weibull analysis enables the scatter...
Article
Full-text available
The skin is the interface between an organism and its world. It has many functions, some of which are of current interest (e.g. superhydrophobicity, color, rheological effects). It is probably the most versatile of all organ systems, having mechano-sensory and skeletal functions as well, whose relative importance is different in different groups of...
Article
The mechanism of phenolic tanning of insect cuticle, and other extracellular protein structures such as byssus and perisarc, has been supposed to be due to specific covalent cross links. Yet cuticle can be swollen in a strong H-bond breaker, an observation that instantly and irrevocably disproves this theory. Physico-chemical expulsion of water is...
Article
Julian Vincent, Professor of Biomimetics and Director of the Centre for Biomimetics and Natural Technologies within the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bath, identifies three distinct levels at which patterns can be translated from biology to architecture. Emphasising the importance of pattern recognition in the transfer o...
Article
Full-text available
Biology can inform technology at all levels (materials, structures, mechanisms, machines, and control) but there is still a gap between biology and technology. This review itemizes examples of biomimetic products and concludes that the Russian system for inventive problem solving (teoriya resheniya izobreatatelskikh zadatch (TRIZ)) is the best syst...
Article
Full-text available
The spines or quills of hedgehogs and porcupines are morphologically and mechanically different. In simple terms, it seems that the quills of porcupines are proportioned to be as long as possible without bending too easily when loaded axially. By contrast, the spines of the hedgehog are as short as possible while still able to bend when loaded axia...
Article
Grass carp were allowed to feed on a variety of plants, presented one species at a time. They were filmed and their faeces collected. Canadian pondweed, a grass and a filamentous alga were readily taken; greater duckweed, shining pondweed and the leaves of reedmace were not so acceptable. Limiting factors in feeding seem to vary: with the two pondw...
Article
The digging movements of the isolated ovipositor assembly of female locusts were filmed and analysed. The interpretation of the movements was compared, quantitatively, with observations on the intact ovipositing insect. The following major points were revealed. (i) The thrust of the ovipositor is at an angle to the axis of the hole. This allows the...
Article
Adult Rhodnius prolixus Stål increase the volume of the abdomen when feeding by stretching the lateral abdominal pleat. This paper shows that the observed extension may be entirely accounted for by unfolding corrugations in the pleat.
Article
This paper presents a bio-inspired approach for the future design of strain sensors to be embedded in space structures. Campaniform sensilla are natural strain sensors and are used by insects for monitoring deformations of their body. The strategy used in nature is to locally amplify, through arrays of elliptical micro-holes, mechanical deformation...
Article
Full-text available
I’ve long been suspicious about attempts to see energy as the overwhelmingly central item setting both options and criteria for design in nature. Indeed, when I tried to create a conceptual framework for teaching biology to college students, I ended up putting energy distinctly second to information. Where energy rules, one can find some analog of...
Article
Full-text available
It has come to the attention of the authors that they omitted an author from the author list of the above article. The excluded author, Dr Richard Bomphrey (Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX1 3PS, UK, e-mail: richard.bomphrey@zoo.ox.ac.uk), made an important and early contribution to the work reported in the paper. The authors...
Article
X-ray microanalysis of the ovipositor and mandibles of various hymenopterous insects has revealed the presence in many species of up to 10% wt/wt of either zinc or manganese in the cuticle. These metals appear to be involved in cuticular hardening, so helping to reduce abrasive wear. Zinc is found in the ovipositors of most Siricidae, Stephanoidea,...
Chapter
Natural materials are all hierarchical composites composed of a relatively small number of basic materials. Commonly, the composite will be based on fibres that can support tensile loads (a fibre is defined as at least 100 times longer than wide) in a matrix that holds the fibres together and passes force, by shear, between the fibres. The fibres c...
Article
The Weibull modulus of potato crisps is about 4, comparable with ceramic materials, with a characteristic strength of about 1.5 MPa. This combination of brittleness and weakness gives crispness. The critical stress intensity factor (KIC) and the energy of fracture (R) are around 0.12 MPa and 45 J m–2, respectively. There was no significant differen...
Article
Full-text available
Woodpecker can be modelled as a low-inertia hammer. It uses the angular momentum of its body, generated by contraction of its leg muscles, to accelerate its head towards the tree, which it is pecking. It appears to peck at a resonant frequency.
Article
Full-text available
This paper introduces jumping robots as a means to traverse rough terrain; such terrain can pose problems for traditional wheeled, tracked and legged designs. The diversity of jumping mechanisms found in nature is explored to support the theory that jumping is a desirable ability for a robot locomotion system to incorporate, and then the size-relat...
Article
Full-text available
Due to ultraviolet flux to the surface layers of most solar system bodies, future astrobiological research is increasingly seeking to conduct subsurface penetration, drilling and sampling to detect chemical signature of extant or extinct life. To seek a compact solution to this issue, we present a micro-penetrator concept (mass < 10 kg) that is sui...
Article
Full-text available
The idea of mimicking natural strain sensor and its implementation in Si-based MEMS are presented. Campaniform sensillum of insects is a dome-shape strain sensor, known for its high sensitivity. The high sensitivity of campaniform sensillum is due to among others, its unique structure of stress-concentrating hole, and a dome-shape membrane-in-reces...
Article
We present a bio-inspired strategy for designing embedded strain sensors in space structures. In insects, the campaniform sensillum is a hole extending through the cuticle arranged such that its shape changes in response to loads. The shape change is rotated through 90° by the suspension of a bell-shaped cap whose deflection is detected by a cell b...
Chapter
Full-text available
This paper describes the idea of mimicking natural strain sensor and its implementation in Si-based MEMS. Campaniform sensillum of insects is a strain sensor, known for its high sensitivity. We devise a dome-shape membrane-in-recess structure similar to Campaniform sensillum, to mimic its stress-concentrating hole-opening feature, as well as its st...
Article
Full-text available
Growing interest in planetary subsurface exploration has prompted an examination of advanced drilling technologies. One of the major limitations of sampling in low gravity environments (such as Mars, asteroids, etc.) using conventional rotary drills is the need for high axial force, which suffers from big overhead mass, buckling problems, and power...
Article
Freezing was used to induce controlled damage to apple and potato parenchyma. As the tissue freezes ice crystals form extra- or intracellularly, pushing the cells apart or rupturing cell walls producing large voids within the tissue. Mechanical tests (wedge penetration, tensile and compression) on specimens frozen to a certain temperature at a cont...
Article
Whole apples were compressed uni-axially with the core at right angles (horizontal compression) and parallel (vertical compression) to the direction of force. Under horizontal compression, the apple begins to bruise as soon as force is applied. The energy absorbed is proportional to the volume of bruise produced. Resistance to bruising varies with...
Chapter
Wir befinden uns aufgrund unseres Einsatzes von Technologie an einem Kipppunkt der überlebensfähigkeit. Millionen Jahre haben Organismen auf der Welt überlebt, die Menschheit hingegen sieht sich schon nach wenigen tausend Jahren der Zivilisation einer unsicheren Zukunft gegenüber. Wir kennen einige mögliche Rettungsszenarien, die meisten davon habe...
Article
Publication rate of patents can be a useful measure of innovation and productivity in science and technology. Patenting activity in new technological fields follows a sigmoid (S-shaped) path. Qualitative and quantitative models in management and economics literature explain why such patterns of productivity may occur. TRIZ analysis suggests that pa...
Article
Full-text available
PIP This article discusses the steps in the revolution of materials. It is noted that the first step should involve the shifting of existing misguided economic policies. Raw material production should be taxed, rather than subsidized; and industries and households should have to pay the full cost of disposing their waste. Although economic incentiv...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents a review of recent rolling robots including Rollo from Helsinki University of Technology. Spherical Mobile Robot from the Politecnico of Bari, Sphericle from the University of Pisa, Spherobot from Michigan State University. August from Azad University of Qazvin and the University of Tehran, Deformable Robot from Ritsumeijan Univ...
Article
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We provide a brief overview of the articles appearing in this special issue and place them in the context of the long history of the study of plant biomechanics and what we judge to be the next major intellectual and/or technological challenges in this field.
Article
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Examples are presented showing the way in which biological systems produce a range of functions which can be implemented in engineering, such as feedback-control of stiffness (muscles and nervous system), the design of fault-free structures (trees) and damage-tolerant materials (wood) and high performance insulation (penguin feathers) and shock abs...
Article
Full-text available
Biomimetics, a name coined by Otto Schmitt in the 1950s for the transfer of ideas and analogues from biology to technology, has produced some significant and successful devices and concepts in the past 50 years, but is still empirical. We show that TRIZ, the Russian system of problem solving, can be adapted to illuminate and manipulate this process...
Article
Active polychaetes of the family Nereididae possess a large number of compound setae originating in seta-bundles at the distal end of the parapodium. Here we investigate the functional role of the setae in Nereis diversicolor by comparing the locomotor performance of neuropodial seta-ablated worms with normal (control, non-ablated) worms moving on...
Article
Ideas from engineering have helped the understanding of biological organisms for thousands of years. However, the mechanical aspects of biological materials and structures can, if properly interpreted and analysed, lead to a deeper understanding of the biology of organisms. Such an approach, although always current in some form, is nevertheless sub...
Article
Ideas from engineering have helped the understanding of biological organisms for thousands of years. However, the mechanical aspects of biological materials and structures can, if properly interpreted and analysed, lead to a deeper understanding of the biology of organisms. Such an approach, although always current in some form, is nevertheless sub...
Article
Laminae of Lolium perenne and Phleum pratense were tested mechanically and the results analysed using engineering composite theory and fracture mechanics. As the lamina dries the fibres double in stiffness. The intervening cells show a sevenfold increase in stiffness below 20% water content (based on dry weight). Work to fracture across the veins i...
Article
Full-text available
A new strain-sensing structure inspired from insect's (especially the Fly) propricoception sensor is devised. The campaniform sensillum is a strain-sensing microstructure with very high sensitivity despite its small dimension (diameter ~10 µm in a relatively stiff material of insect's exocuticle (E = ~109 Pa). Previous work shows that the high sens...
Article
Most multicellular organisms can be categorised by two words: hierarchy and composite. The underlying fractal geometry of nature - at least in terms of provision of infrastructure - provides much of the hierarchy, although many materials for which infrastructure is not an integral factor are also strongly hierarchical. Plants can therefore be model...
Article
Most multicellular organisms can be categorised by two words: hierarchy and composite. The underlying fractal geometry of nature - at least in terms of provision of infrastructure - provides much of the hierarchy, although many materials for which infrastructure is not an integral factor are also strongly hierarchical. Plants can therefore be model...