Anja Soklič Anja Soklič

My name is Anja and I come from one of the most beautiful places on the world – Bled, a small town in a very small country called Slovenia but very beautiful! Imagine that in two hours you can traverse this country, passing high mountains, numerous rivers and lakes, valleys, vineyard hills, and finish on the coast. No wonder why I decided to start my studies in relation to nature.

All articles by Anja Soklič

 

Biomimetic potential of electric eels 

Water and electricity – two things that we normally avoid bringing in contact because it can lead to a bad accident. And there comes the question, how could this combination be an essential survival strategy for many fish species? Electric eels are one of the most known examples and will be presented in this article for...
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Salt regulation in freshwater and seawater fishes

What happens to a watermelon, if you throw it the sea? Try to answer this question already now based on your knowledge about physical laws or just make a pure guess. If you are not sure, keep this question in mind while reading the article and you might get a better understanding of the principle...
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Elastic energy storage for seed dispersal

As already mentioned in our introduction article about energy storage, the topic of this article will be elastic energy storage. There are many examples of how different animal species use this kind of energy for running, walking or hopping (kangaroos, flees, click beetles, etc.) by using tendons. For them, elastic mechanisms  have a great influence...
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Theme session: “Energy storage”

Dear readers, we are starting a new theme session, which will be dedicated to  “energy storage”. Our focus will be on presenting different strategies in living organisms that nature developed in order to store energy. Types of energy, their purpose and working mechanisms are topics you can expect to read about in the next weeks, based...
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Functional optimization of tracheids and vessels in wood

For the theme session of WOOD, I will take a closer look  at the microstructure of trees and write about the structure, function and optimization of vessels and tracheids. It is well known that trees suck up the water by their roots und transfer it up to the leaves. When trees are freshly cut, it is interesting to...
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The sound of vibrating surfaces

Recently, I watched an old family video that we recorded when we were on holidays in the Mediterranean. To my surprise, the only sound I heard was the unpleasant noise of insects that appear in huge numbers in this area. It does not matter how hard I tried every year to see one, they are...
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Frog’s natural antifreeze to survive freezing

The unbelievable fact that frogs can survive the freezing of their own body led me to writing this article in the theme session of ice. Frogs are cold-blooded organisms and their body temperature conforms with their immediate surrounding. This feature would normally prevent habitations of cold climate due to the risk of lethal freezing. Nevertheless,...
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Light production via bioluminescence

The creation of light is for sure one of the most interesting natural phenomena, especially if it occurs by living organisms. Bioluminescence means the emission of light by an organism as a result of a natural chemical reaction [1]. A remarkable variety of marine animals, underground organisms and terrestrial animals are able to produce light by...
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LIGHT: our first theme session

Dear readers, With this article we are starting a new blog concept: – “theme sessions”. Every month a new theme will be defined and every Blogionik author will write an article based on its field of interest or experience. Therefore you can expect articles with different topics – but all related to the same theme....
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The “socio economic Biomimetics”

With this article about socio economic Biomimetics I am slightly moving away from our common topics which are mainly technologically oriented and based on scientific research. The purpose is to subjectively present a natural system and imagine how its processes could be transferred into society that it becomes more sustainable, flexible and autonomous.   Last week, Katharina...
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Quiz

To celebrate the first anniversary of BlogIONIK we prepared a special quiz for you. It consists of 10 questions which are based on the content of our articles posted in the last year. Rules: Write down your answers and send them on this e-mail: quiz@blogionik.org with the subject: Quiz Some questions have multiple choice answers,...
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Papyrus and electrostatic water condensation

  Dear readers, this is the last topic of three articles about electrostatic fields. In the first one I wrote about strategies for water condensation, and the second one was about natural electrostatic fields on plants. This article is about my own research where I investigated, if plants can actually condensate atmospheric water vapour on the...
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Natural electrostatic fields

It is not so common to mention plants in relation to electrostatic fields. Nevertheless, there are some interesting facts about this topic and you might be surprised how many natural processes are hidden behind the phenomenon of electrostatics. Electrostatic fields of plants During fair weather conditions (meaning a relatively clear sky with calm winds), a vertical electric...
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10 questions to Prof. Ille C. Gebeshuber

This time, we present you Prof. Ille C. Gebeshuber. She is a physicist who spent the last seven years at the National University in Malaysia.  During various rainforest expeditions with her students, coming from many different fields of science, they learn from the rainforest life and ecosystem to do things in a different and more...
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Strategies for water condensation and collection

  It does not matter where on Earth we are, water is essential for all living organisms. Some organisms are luck and do not even have to consider that as a problem but for the others it means a daily fight for survival. Desert is a typical example where water sources are rare, sometimes it does...
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Temperature regulation by plants and animals

During evolution, life has spread all around the world. This means that different species of plants and animals are inhabiting practically every part of the Earth with different climate conditions. For humans it is not such a problem to live even in extreme conditions. Our technology, for example air conditioning in summer and heating systems...
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Simulation of natural systems – Part II

In my previous article I was explaining the swarming behavior of fish in a predator-prey system. There you can read about basic rules underlying the mechanism of swarm formation. The next step now is to make a computer simulation of such a system by using the Matlab software. Without any previous experience with programming languages, this first step...
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Simulation of natural systems -Part I

There are always two interesting parts in the field of Biomimetics. The first one belongs to biological phenomena and the other one is the technical part. In all our previous articles we were describing some interesting natural systems or structures and processes, but so far we have not discussed how they can be put in...
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Heat transfer control by cold-blooded organisms

Since centuries, people living in areas with cold winters have been trying to economize the energy required to keep their homes warm. Traditional alpine houses were constructed in a way that the living area was above the barn where animals produced enough heat to warm up the ceiling for several degrees. This required much less additional...
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Photosynthesis and dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC)

Renewable energies – it is a hot topic since the last 10 years. Many developed countries around the world are tending to shift their energy production to a “green” one due to the global warming problem and energetic self-sufficiency. Among all possible renewable energy technologies, photovoltaic industry is growing very fast. Its main material is...
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Biomimetics for next generation materials – Paper Overview

  I am pretty sure every one of you has already heard about a super natural material – spider silk which is lightweight but at the same time tougher than steel. It has been a topic of engineering research for many years, with the aim to synthetically produce it but so far with no real...
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Self-cleaning surfaces

Who doesn’t know the famous lotus plant Nelumbo nucifera? If you type down the word “Biomimetics” in Google pictures, you get this plant as one of the first results. It’s a typical example of biomimetic products because the self-cleaning façade colour (Lotusan© – video ) has been produced based on lotus’ superhydrophobic surface. The largest...
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Pollen filtration from water inspired by a flamingo

I didn’t actually know what Biomimetics is before I started my master studies and as usually, the first week at the faculty is always related to some theoretical facts. I learned that Biomimetics is a useful method to develop new products, new technology, etc., based on principal ideas from natural phenomena. And then baaam, immediately...
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My personal experience with biomimetics (Anja)

A few years ago when I went for a run or just a walk, I was of course thinking about how nice the nature is. How beautiful the colours of autumn leaves are, how nice it smells in a pine tree forest, how diverse animals and plants are, etc. That was practically it, I was...
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