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Frontiers of Mechanical Engineering

Front. Mech. Eng.    2019, Vol. 14 Issue (1) : 1-14     https://doi.org/10.1007/s11465-018-0511-0
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Creative design inspired by biological knowledge: Technologies and methods
Runhua TAN1(), Wei LIU1, Guozhong CAO1, Yuan SHI2
1. School of Mechanical Engineering, Hebei University of Technology, Tianjin 300401, China; National Engineering Research Center for Technological Innovation Method and Tool, Hebei University of Technology, Tianjin 300401, China
2. Department of Mechanical Engineering, Politecnico di Milano, Milan 20156, Italy
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Abstract

Biological knowledge is becoming an important source of inspiration for developing creative solutions to engineering design problems and even has a huge potential in formulating ideas that can help firms compete successfully in a dynamic market. To identify the technologies and methods that can facilitate the development of biologically inspired creative designs, this research briefly reviews the existing biological-knowledge-based theories and methods and examines the application of biological-knowledge-inspired designs in various fields. Afterward, this research thoroughly examines the four dimensions of key technologies that underlie the biologically inspired design (BID) process. This research then discusses the future development trends of the BID process before presenting the conclusions.

Keywords creative design      biologically inspired methods      key technologies     
Corresponding Authors: Runhua TAN   
Online First Date: 21 May 2018    Issue Date: 30 November 2018
 Cite this article:   
Runhua TAN,Wei LIU,Guozhong CAO, et al. Creative design inspired by biological knowledge: Technologies and methods[J]. Front. Mech. Eng., 2019, 14(1): 1-14.
 URL:  
http://journal.hep.com.cn/fme/EN/10.1007/s11465-018-0511-0
http://journal.hep.com.cn/fme/EN/Y2019/V14/I1/1
Fig.1  Hierarchies of biomimetics and biomimicry
Fig.2  The genealogy diagram of the terminologies in BID
Fig.3  Various diagrammatic models for the structure of octopus suckers. (a) DANE; (b) SAPPhIRE; (c) UNO-BID; (d) MBE. ATP is the abbreviation of adenosine triphosphate, ADP is the abbreviation of adenosine diphosphate, Mol is the physical unit for mole
Fig.4  Typical design process in biologically inspired innovation. (a) Solution-driven process; (b) problem-driven BID process; (c) eight-stage unified problem-driven biomimetics process
Steps Name Feasible methods & tools
1 Problem analysis Define the main function (BioTRIZ, MBE); define the problem (BID, DANE); describe the problem by using an adverb triplet (SAPPhIRE); specify the function terms (bio-SBF)
2 Abstractly define problems Reframe the problem (BID, DANE); functional modeling (BID, MBE)
3 Transport to biology Look for prototypes in biology (BioTRIZ); search for a biological solution (BID); translate the input into analogies (SAPPhIRE); search for relevant function terms (bio-SBF); general attribute operation (MBE)
4 Sort potential bio-prototypes Biological database (DANE, SAPPhIRE, MBE); PRIZM matrix (BioTRIZ); knowledge cells library (bio-SBF)
5 Compare and select bio-prototypes Frequent terms (DANE, SAPPhIRE, bio-SBF); grey cluster (MBE)
6 Analyze biological strategies Biological knowledge representing methods (DANE,…)
7 Transport to technology Biological analogies (BID, MBE, bio-SBF); invention principles (BioTRIZ); principle application (BID)
8 Implement & verify Function design, grey cluster, and evaluation (MBE)
Tab.1  Feasible methods that can be used in unified problem-driven biologically inspired innovation
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