2021 Mechanical Biomimetics

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Mechanical Engineering
Tanaka Hiroto 
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Course description and aims

Biomimetics is the concept of understanding the structure of organisms and the functions and principles of systems to reconfigure them artificially in order to solve complex problems of human society and technology. This academic discipline requires interdisciplinary knowledge spanning biology, mechanical engineering, chemistry, and sociology. The instructor in this course explains the mechanical engineering aspect of biomimetics using specific research cases. The instructor will especially focus on mechanism of flying and swimming and micro- and nano-scale structures centered on insects to explain typical biological structures, principles, measuring devices, and production techniques.

Student learning outcomes

Through this course, students will acquire diverse biological and engineering knowledge required for mechanical biomimetics at an introductory level.


Biomimetics, Biomechanics, Fluid dynamics, Micro fabrication

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Classroom lecture using PowerPoint slides

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Overview of Biomimetics NA
Class 2 Flying I NA
Class 3 Flying II NA
Class 4 Swimming NA
Class 5 Adhesion and anti-adhesion NA
Class 6 Functional micro/nano surface structures: Lotus leaf, Morpho butterfly, and moth eye NA
Class 7 Mechanical and optical sensors NA

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.



Reference books, course materials, etc.

A. Azuma, The Biokinetics of Flying and Swimming Second Edition, AIAA, 2006.
Other references will be introduced in the course.

Assessment criteria and methods

Brief reports in every lecture and final report in the end of semester

Related courses

  • MEC.L331 : Basic Bioengineering
  • MEC.J331 : Fundamentals of Micro and Nano Machining
  • MEC.F531 : Flying Object Engineering

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)


Contact information (e-mail and phone)    Notice : Please replace from "[at]" to "@"(half-width character).

Associate Professor Hiroto Tanaka

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