AN INSECT WITH MECHANICAL GEARS

An Insect With Mechanical Gears
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AN INSECT WITH MECHANICAL GEARS



Written by Robert Foster
01 Tuesday 01st October 2013

Malcolm Burrows and Gregory Sutton, biologists from the University of Cambridge, found that small insects called an Issus coleoptratus, or plant hoppers, have had functioning gears since well before us humans invented them. The gears themselves have 10 to 12 80-micrometer 'teeth' and help with coordination, allowing for quick, synchronized jumps.

“These gears are not designed; they are evolved,” says Sutton, “representing high speed and precision machinery evolved for synchronization in the animal world.”

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