Innovators are full of questions.Nature has answers.
EXPLORE BY FUNCTION

  

  • Strategy

Optimal branching of vascular vessels minimizes work: mammals

Loading...

Lung branches / Patrick J. L.. / LicenseCC-by - Attribution

Vascular and respiratory vessels in mammals minimize the amount of biological work required to operate by being arranged hierarchically.

FUNCTION
Summary
"The vessels found in mammalian cardiovascular and respiratory systems are usually arranged in hierarchical structures and a distinctive feature of this arrangement is their multi-stage division or bifurcation. At each generation, the characteristic dimension of the vascular segments will generally become smaller, both in length and diameter." (Barber and Emerson 2008: 179)
 
"The branching structures found in mammalian cardiovascular and respiratory systems have evolved, through natural selection, to an optimum arrangement that minimizes the amount of biological work required to operate and maintain the system. The relationship between the diameter of the parent vessel and the optimum diameters of the daughter vessels was first derived by Murray (1926) using the principle of minimum work. This relationship is now known as Murray’s law and states that the cube of the diameter of a parent vessel equals the sum of the cubes of the diameters of the daughter vessels." (Barber and Emerson 2008: 180)

[This mathematical structure is also found in trees and other organisms that exhibit branching]
About the inspiring organism
Mammalia
Mammalia

Learn more at EOL.org
Organism/taxonomy data provided by:
Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2008 Annual Checklist


Bioinspired products and application ideas

Application Ideas: Artificial microfluidic distribution systems. Systems of miniaturized reactors and separators. Lab-on-a-chip devices.

Industrial Sector(s) interested in this strategy: Nano and microtechnologies

References
Barber RW; Emerson DR. 2008. Optimal design of microfluidic networks using biologically inspired principles. Microfluidics and Nanofluidics. 4: 179-191.
Learn More at Google Scholar Google Scholar  

Murray CD. 1926. The physiological principle of minimum work. I. the vascular system and the cost of blood volume. PNAS. 12: 207-214.
Learn More at Google Scholar Google Scholar  

Comments

Login to Post a Comment.
Sm_avatar
Sherry
over 5 years ago
Thanks to Duarte Miguel Prazeres for adding this strategy, which describes Murray's Law, a key inspiration for the new logo for Biomimicry 3.8.
1 to 1 of 1 Comments

Share

Error - AskNature

We're sorry, but an error has occurred.

Some functionality on AskNature, particularly related to Search and login, breaks somewhat frequently. Although our small team does its best to respond with repairs as quickly as possible, there are often gaps in service that result—and it's likely that you've found one of those gaps!

The Biomimicry Institute is currently rebuilding AskNature from the ground up to be more stable, secure, and user-friendly. If you get value out of AskNature,please consider donating to the Institute in order to see fewer of these error messages in the future.

If you were attempting to search AskNature, please consider using Google to search the site until we get our search engine back up and running:

  1. In a new Google search, enter the following: site:asknature.org [your query]. For example a search for "storing water" would be entered as site:asknature.org storing water.

Have additional questions or want to let us know about something else that went wrong? Please submit a support ticket.