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Bioinspir Biomim 2020 Nov 30;161:. doi: 10.1088/1748-3190/abb86b.
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Constructional design of echinoid endoskeleton: main structural components and their potential for biomimetic applications.

Perricone V , Grun TB , Marmo F , Langella C , Candia Carnevali MD .

The endoskeleton of echinoderms (Deuterostomia: Echinodermata) is of mesodermal origin and consists of cells, organic components, as well as an inorganic mineral matrix. The echinoderm skeleton forms a complex lattice-system, which represents a model structure for naturally inspired engineering in terms of construction, mechanical behaviour and functional design. The sea urchin (Echinodermata: Echinoidea) endoskeleton consists of three main structural components: test, dental apparatus and accessory appendages. Although, all parts of the echinoid skeleton consist of the same basic material, their microstructure displays a great potential in meeting several mechanical needs according to a direct and clear structure-function relationship. This versatility has allowed the echinoid skeleton to adapt to different activities such as structural support, defence, feeding, burrowing and cleaning. Although, constrained by energy and resource efficiency, many of the structures found in the echinoid skeleton are optimized in terms of functional performances. Therefore, these structures can be used as role models for bio-inspired solutions in various industrial sectors such as building constructions, robotics, biomedical and material engineering. The present review provides an overview of previous mechanical and biomimetic research on the echinoid endoskeleton, describing the current state of knowledge and providing a reference for future studies.

PubMed ID: 32927446
Article link: Bioinspir Biomim