Department of
Entomology

Entomology News

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Latch, load and release: Elastic motion makes click beetles click, study finds

Click beetles can propel themselves more than 20 body lengths into the air, and they do so without using their legs. While the jump’s motion has been studied in depth, the physical mechanisms that enable the beetles’ signature clicking maneuver have not. A new study examines the forces behind this super-fast energy release and provides guidelines for studying extreme motion, energy storage and energy release in other small animals like trap-jaw ants and mantis shrimps.

The multidisciplinary study, led by University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign mechanical science and engineering professors Aimy Wissa and Alison Dunn, entomology professor Marianne Alleyne and mechanical science and engineering graduate student and lead author Ophelia Bolmin, is published in the Proceedings of that National Academy of Science.

See a video describing this research.

Read the full article at the Illinois News Bureau


Publication Date: 01/26/2021
Photo credits: L. Brian Stauffer
Editor: Lois Yoksoulian