Dandelion seeds reveal newly discovered form of natural flight

As an engineer, this really looks designed to me.

A study of dandelion seeds in motion has revealed a form of flight not seen before, and explains why the plant is among nature’s best fliers.



Me too. And what excited me most when I learned to write EAs (evolutionary algorithms) to solve computational problems is that even very simple algorithms could create “brilliant” solutions and even efficient physical structures which looked much like sophisticated designs produced by skilled engineers.

I often ask my Christian brethren, “Don’t you think an omniscient and omnipotent God is capable of creating a universe in such a way that natural processes can produce amazing structures which look like something an engineer would build?” The anti-evolutionists among them usually hesitate for a bit and then say something like, “Well…sure. God is certainly capable of something like that. But I know that he didn’t because Genesis says that he didn’t.” (“Really?! Are you sure that is what it says?”)


This is very interesting and cool. often one finds bubbles used this way in nature, so a spectrum going on, and how drag really does matter.

This is how Evolution News covered Dandleion seed flight:


they did a good article and interestingb in many ways.
Yet I disagree with everyone. I have read and thought about how vortices are used by insects, mammals(like humming birds i believe), geomorohology.
its not surprising to me or nEW to see vortices used by plants. I think I’ve read about it for years.
I have thought often on how it could be used by humans for locomotion. i bumped into it first in how vortices were the mechanism for so much sculpting in rock from floods.
Birds are said to use vortices to help them fly. A very minor point if dumb plants do it.
i don’t think its new at all.

A man alone with his thoughts. :sunglasses:

1 Like