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Author Topic: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?  (Read 6439 times)

Devan Norris

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Devan Norris  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Dear Naked Scientists-

I was listening to the Naked Oceans Podcast last week, and heard Dr. Scales talking about ship hull anti-fouling materials.

I was curious if you thought that perhaps the anti-bacterial plastic that was modeled on shark skin (I misremember which episode that was mentioned in) could be used as an anti-fouling, anti-barnacle material on ships. I know that sharks typically have cleaner fish, maybe they would pitch in too.

Love the podcast, thanks for everything!

Devan Norris

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 24/10/2011 11:01:04 by _system »


 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?
« Reply #1 on: 08/01/2012 21:45:40 »
Most interesting idea.
Certainly there are characteristics of living tissue that are hard to replicate synthetically.

Consider painting your fingers, and painting the fingertips of some leather gloves.

Within a day or so, most of the paint on the fingertips is gone.  The paint often remains on the gloves for a long time.

I believe the skin is constantly secreting new oils, as well as sloughing old skin cells.  And, constantly flexing.  I would assume the same would be true with shark skin.

So, one might find some proteins that the sea stuff doesn't like to stick to.  But, there would be a lot more to a self-cleaning skin.

 

Offline RD

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Re: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?
« Reply #2 on: 09/01/2012 14:22:19 »
... sloughing old skin cells ...

There is "sloughing bottom paint" , (no it's not a treatment for a medical condition  :) )
« Last Edit: 09/01/2012 14:25:57 by RD »
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?
« Reply #3 on: 25/07/2012 22:08:26 »
Shark skin has a complex structure under the microscope http://www.ebaumsworld.com/pictures/view/81256978/
There was a suggestion that these hydrodynamic shapes are coupled to nerves and muscles which allow movement of the plates, to achieve the extremely low turbulence that sharks experience as they glide through the water.

Perhaps this unstable, moving surface makes it hard for barnacles to attach?
Reducing frictional losses on a ship would reduce operational costs.
 

Offline AllenG

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Offline Sergvov

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Re: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?
« Reply #5 on: 02/07/2013 13:19:34 »
newbielink:http://www.archiv.fraunhofer.de/archiv/pi-en-2004-2008/EN/press/pi/2006/12/ResearchNews12-2006-Topic4.html [nonactive]
^^^
Those guys are working on shark skin paint for aircraft.

Thanks those guys for that , it's really cool work .
 

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Re: Would fake shark skin protect hulls from fouling?
« Reply #5 on: 02/07/2013 13:19:34 »

 

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