The skin is at the interface of living organisms and their environment, and has evolved interesting structural properties usually over the course of millions of years, providing clues for the design of manmade biomimetic surfaces with favorable fluid mechanics properties. Here, we describe steps to produce silicone rubber films based on microscopy data from shark skin denticles, from data acquisition and manufacturing to attachment to an airfoil for experimental fluid dynamics in large towing tanks. This method is relatively low-cost, may be generalized to other types of patterned micro-structured surfaces, and the manufacturing process may be reproduced by anyone equipped with a 3D printer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry