Design by Nature
start by defining some premises for a better understanding of the
situations that we will analyze in this presentation.
challenge is to optimize the development of an extravehicular flying
object inspired by the natural world, which must be able to inspect
the external structure of a spacecraft (e.g. Space Shuttle) in the
quickest and most effective way.
to the latest products produced, the thermoprotective
has three characteristics:
as the Shuttle has a larger surface than the spacecraft as used for
the Apollo program.
unlike previous disposable thermal shields.
given the low density, for a matter of lightness.
the moment one of the most effective methods to inspect the vehicle
is the use of a robotic arm called the Orbiter
Boom Sensor System,
at the end of which there is a series of inspection instruments.
once in the vicinity of the International Space Station, the crew
performs a rendezvous
so that you can take high-resolution photographs of the heat shield.
ambition (goal) of our project is to provide a new tool for mapping
the damage caused by MM
(Micro-Meteoroid and Orbital Debris) in order to optimize the flight
plan of the Free-Flyer inspection/repair module.
we think of what is the "hardware" instrumentation that the
human body uses to locate a critical area like a wound, we must
necessarily lead back to a structure similar to our skin.
using the fractal method, each of its epithelial cells is organized
into tissues, which are arranged to form the skin - the largest organ
of our body.
the same way, the nervous tissue that comes out of it is arranged in
bundles that become axons. These finally run along the spine in order
to reach the central
more quickly and efficiently, responsible for processing the data.
the various functions of the skin we recall the most significant:
as a physical barrier against external aggressions.
thanks to the nerve endings organized in different types of
corpuscles (thermoreceptors, nociceptors, baroreceptors ...)
: with a blood supply higher than its metabolic needs,
it manages to regulate the internal temperature of the body thanks
to the vasodilating-vasoconstriction mechanism.
is usually divided into:
harder and more resistant, acts as a physical protection and is
lighter and more abundant, it is found under the epidermis and is
richly vascularized and innervated
– Sensitive Kinetic Intelligent Net
seen in the introduction, the Space Shuttle uses a thermal protection
module consisting of individual cells, divided in:
abundant and foamy
empty), very light in silicon fiber;
thinner and harder borosilicate
that acts as physical protection.
now on we are going to consider these two layers assimilated to the
Dermis and Epidermis of S.K.I.N.
the shield as designed, it already provides two of the three main
functions of the skin:
providing the first barrier between the outside and the inside of
since the dark cover can repel about 95% of the heat protecting the
goal is to implement a sensory capture method on HRSI tiles, without
changing the fundamental structure of the shield or fuselage, making
sure not to damage the main structure, and adding less weight
possible to the vehicle.
construction of the electrical system at the base of the project will
also take into account the beam structure of the Central
to optimize the transfer of information.
fundamental element of construction, similar to the SKIN cell, is
externally and structurally very similar to HRSI. In this way we will
not change the fixing procedure and the anatomy of the fuselage.
adding a few simple elements we can make our tile "nociceptive
able to detect every small trumatic event that involves its
works as follows:
coil like the one shown in the figure is placed at the interface
between the foam and the borosilicate coating. It represents the
resistance of an RLC circuit designed to be closed and oscillating.
an impact phenomenon the continuity of the track is interrupted by
opening the circuit and triggering the alarm signal.
took inspiration from the functioning of the
in the form of free
: following a damage to
the cortical surface, the penetration into the dermis of an external
compotent stimulates or damages these terminations by sending a
danger pulse first to the cerebellum (to activate the reflected arc)
then to the
to process the data of the event just happened.
how the mind works,
traduzione di Massimo Parizzi, Castelvecchi editore, 2017
D., Heler H. C., Orians G.H.,
La scienza della vita
Shuttle Thermal Protection System,
February 2013. Free iTunes ebook download.
G., Venturi E.,
di elettrotecnica ed automazione
II edizione Hoepli, 2017.