Fire Ants Build a Raft In Two Minutes, Grubs Eat A Pizza In Two Hours

Condensed Matter lunchtime seminar

Fire Ants Build a Raft In Two Minutes, Grubs Eat A Pizza In Two Hours

Event details

The world can be a dangerous place, especially if you are an insect. In the wetlands of Brazil, fire ants link their bodies together to build waterproof rafts. The rafts can bounce off rocks or flow around twigs, exhibiting both liquid and solid behavior from the ants rearranging their bodies. Rearrangement is also important for black soldier fly larvae, which are the dominant scavengers of animal carcasses. These grubs can eat an entire pizza in two hours. We film insects using time-lapse video, and measure their forces using rheometers and force platforms. The speed and versatility of these biological materials may provide inspiration for synthetic systems.

About Condensed Matter lunchtime seminars

This is a weekly series of informal talks given primarily by members of the soft condensed matter and statistical mechanics groups, but is also open to members of other groups and external visitors. The aim of the series is to promote discussion and learning of various topics at a level suitable to the broad background of the group. Everyone is welcome to attend..

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