Seahorses get their exceptional flexibility from the structure of their bony plates, which form its external armor. The plates slide past each other as the creature moves. Shown at left is an image from a micro CT-scan of the animal, revealing the seahorse’s skeleton, as well as its bony plates. The structure, lightness and strength of many materials in nature are inspiring scientists and engineers to create new “bio-mimetic” materials that could lead to better body armor, lighter aircraft and stronger, more flexible materials.
Another apparently tiny, inconsequential plant, animal, or mineral that has an ingenious design within them, just waiting to be discovered and appreciated.
(via Blamo! Science)