Friday, 27 October 2017

How sponges ‘spike’ themselves with glass

By Andrew WagnerOct. 18, 2017 , 2:00 PM

Sponges are, for lack of a better term, weird. Aside from being some of the most ancient animals on Earth, these marine invertebrates maintain their shape and stiffness with a matrix of glass. Their spiny silica-based spicules grow and branch to form wicked shapes, from thin needles to spiked spheres. But no one knew precisely how sponges could make such a wide variety of symmetrical shapes. So scientists investigated their 3D structure using x-ray nanotomography, a way of peering within tiny structures without destroying them.

No comments:

Post a Comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails