Through natural selection, animals have evolved exquisite adaptations for highly efficient movement through the air, in water and across the ground. Careful analyses of the adaptations of flying, swimming and walking animals are beginning to deliver substantial improvements in the efficiency of a new generation of robotic vehicles. Join zoologist and inventor Adrian Thomas as he showcases his work mimicking nature, from a drone that’s inspired by a dragonfly to a boat with a fin rather than a propeller.
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Discourses are one of the Ri’s oldest and most prestigious series of talks. Since 1825, audiences in the theatre have witnessed countless mind-expanding moments, including the first public liquefaction of air by James Dewar, the announcement of the electron by J.J. Thomson and over 100 lectures by Michael Faraday. In more recent times, we have had Nobel laureates, Fields medal winners, scientists, authors and artists – all from the cutting-edge of their field. Discourses are an opportunity for the best and brightest to share their work with the world.