Biologically Inspired Optimized Materials and Technologies Transformed by Evolutionary Rules (BIOMATTER)

Project Personnel

Katia Bertoldi

Principal Investigator

Harvard University

Email

Mathias Kolle

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Email

Lakshminarayana Mahadevan

Harvard University

Email

Jennifer Lewis

Harvard University

Email

Joanna Aizenberg

Harvard University

Email

Funding Divisions

Division of Materials Research (DMR), Division of Mathematical Sciences (DMS), Office of Multidisciplinary Activities (OMA)

Materials that satisfy society's increasing demand for technological innovation and that provide solutions to major global challenges of the 21st century in the fields of energy efficiency, resource management, technology development, human health, and world security are frequently required to simultaneously exhibit multiple functions with superior performance. Through the course of natural evolution, a plethora of organisms have conceived material solutions that show exemplary performance characteristics across multiple property classes, including mechanics, optics, actuation and chemistry. These organisms thus provide an advantageous starting point for studying the role of morphology, morphogenesis, and material composition on emerging material properties. The project will explore the causalities between hierarchical material architectures, composition and morphogenesis, and the emerging functionalities in a set of exemplary biological systems. This will enable the identification of a generalized set of rules for guiding the design and fabrication of multifunctional 21st century materials.