Shedding Light on Super Reflective Proteins

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Shedding light on super reflective proteins, described in an article in news@nature 8 December 2006. Scientists at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, have found a group of proteins in octopus skin that reflect all wavelengths of light from any angle. The researchers found the proteins in cells called leucophores that form the bottom layer of octopus skin. According to zoologist Roger Hanlon: "Protein reflectors are very odd in the animal world." The proteins are able to reflect all wavelengths of light from any angle and can match the intensity of the surrounding light. "This is beautiful broadband reflection," said Hanlon at a meeting of the Materials Research Society in Boston in November 2006.

Further studies of cuttlefish skin show that the brightness of the leucophores is enhanced by flat platelets contained in a layer above the leucophores, but scientists need to do more research to find out how these work. Scientists hope that once the structure and optical properties of the proteins and cells of octopus skin are understood they could inspire the development of super-reflective materials. The news@nature article concludes: "Hanlon sees his discovery as a call to arms for materials scientists to find applications for the bounty being discovered by zoologists. He's sure they'll find a use for it: after all, he says, the military are always interested in playing with light."

Editorial Comment: Optical engineering requires precision design and engineering. If engineers are able to copy the structure and optical properties of these proteins and platelets they will have more irrefutable evidence that octopus skin was designed by a smarter, more creative Engineer. Therefore, they are without excuse for not recognising the Creator and giving Him the glory due to His name. (Ref. photonics, biotechnology, bio-mimicry)

Evidence News 9 February 2007

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