Beetle masters optics | Science News



Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


Beetle masters optics

Study finds cells in the shell twist light in a particular way

2:37pm, July 23, 2009

Jeweled beetles’ resplendent shells have physicists green with envy. Intricate arrangements of cells on the beetles’ outer layers manipulate light in a special way, a study published online July 23 in Science reveals. Understanding the shell’s structure might prove useful for designing new optical devices.

Chrysina gloriosa get their greenish color from microstructures in their exoskeleton rather than from pigment. Study coauthor Mohan Srinivasarao of the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and his colleagues have found that these structures are also responsible for the beetles’ light-bending tricks. Light hitting the shell is reflected by the microstruc

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content