Where might we find some basic levers in our bodies? How do we measure the forces experienced by muscles during movement? In this activity, Dr Zoe Davies introduces students to the ankle lever system and taking measurements to calculate the force in the Achilles tendon when they stand on their toes.
Professor Richard Bomphrey's group has embarked on a project in collaboration with Dr Huai-Ti Lin's lab at Imperial College London to elucidate how insects sense wing deformation in flight when they are bent and twisted by aerodynamic and inertial loads. The researchers are particularly interested in how insects use that information to control their flight.
An international group of scientists including Professor John Hutchinson and Dr Vivian Allen has constructed a robot, which is able to recreate how a 300 million-year old animal would have walked. This pioneering project is key to enhancing our understanding of how vertebrates first evolved to walk on land. The findings are a result of a collaboration between teams from the EPFL in Switzerland, Humboldt University of Berlin and the Royal Veterinary College.
We are measuring dynamic morphing in bird wings using modern computer vision approaches to develop dynamic three-dimensional surfaces. Using these models, we are exploring kinematic patterns of force generation, identifying mechanisms of gust rejection and recovery, and performing computational fluid dynamics to understand how forces are produced and distributed. These results will shed new insight into the interplay between passive/active wing morphing and aerodynamic force generation and may lead to a new generation of aircraft.
Professor Alan Wilson leads a team of researchers in the southern African savannah to identify how speed, manoeuvring and habitat impact the hunting and evasion practices of carnivores and their prey.
“DAWNDINOS” is a five year research project studying the dawn of the age of the dinosaurs, funded by the European Research Council via an Advanced Investigator Grant to Professor Hutchinson. It focusses on form and function and combines evolutionary and biomechanical research that tests how the anatomy of extinct dinosaurs and their relatives (archosaurs; “ruling reptiles”) was related to their movement and behaviour.
Following the success of our modified research aircraft in our LOCATE project, the ERC-funded AIRSCAN project allows us to commercialise and make available the modifications developed for a modular, single-operator aerial survey and data acquisition airplane: the Trail ADAP. The potential users for this technologically-advanced yet undemanding aerial data acquisition platform include government, NGOs, companies and individuals, with applications ranging from mapping, survey data collection, conservation, academic research and many more.
An innovative approach to assessing animal emotional states which underpin animal welfare. Although we often consider facial expression the best indicator of emotion, humans convey information about their personalities and emotional states in their body posture and movement. Do animals do the same and can we objectively measure emotion in this way?
A new study by researchers at the Royal Veterinary College’s Structure and Motion Laboratory and Botswana Predator Conservation Trust reveals that African wild dogs in mixed woodland savannah habitats may be more energetically robust than previously thought.
Stepping Into Science is part of Dr Jim Usherwood’s Wellcome Trust funded research and combines public engagement with data collection.