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During flight, many insect wings undergo dramatic deformations that are controlled largely by the architecture of the wing. The pattern of supporting veins in wings varies widely among insect orders and families, but the functional significance of phylogenetic trends in wing venation remains unknown, and measurements of the mechanical properties of wings(More)
During flapping flight, insect wings must withstand not only fluid-dynamic forces, but also inertial-elastic forces generated by the rapid acceleration and deceleration of their own mass. Estimates of overall aerodynamic and inertial forces vary widely, and the relative importance of these forces in determining passive wing deformations remains unknown. If(More)
The presence of compliance in the lattice of filaments in muscle raises a number of concerns about how one accounts for force generation in the context of the cross-bridge cycle--binding site motions and coupling between cross-bridges confound more traditional analyses. To explore these issues, we developed a spatially explicit, mechanochemical model of(More)
The dynamic, three-dimensional shape of flapping insect wings may influence many aspects of flight performance. Insect wing deformations during flight are largely passive, and are controlled primarily by the architecture and material properties of the wing. Although many details of wing structure are well understood, the distribution of flexural stiffness(More)
Moving animals orchestrate myriad motor systems in response to multimodal sensory inputs. Coordinating movement is particularly challenging in flight control, where animals deal with potential instability and multiple degrees of freedom of movement. Prior studies have focused on wings as the primary flight control structures, for which changes in angle of(More)
Both kinematics and morphology are critical determinants of performance in flapping flight. However, the functional consequences of changes in these traits are not yet well understood. Traditional aerodynamic studies of planform wing shape have suggested that high-aspect-ratio wings generate more force per area and perform more efficiently than(More)
Dipteran flight requires rapid acquisition of mechanosensory information provided by modified hindwings known as halteres. Halteres experience torques resulting from Coriolis forces that arise during body rotations. Although biomechanical and behavioral data indicate that halteres detect Coriolis forces, there are scant data regarding neural encoding of(More)
The inverse problem of hovering flight, that is, the range of wing movements appropriate for sustained flight at a fixed position and orientation, was examined by developing a simulation of the hawkmoth Manduca sexta. Inverse problems arise when one is seeking the parameters that are required to achieve a specified model outcome. In contrast, forward(More)
As a means of exploring foraging strategies of blood-feeding insects, we studied the mechanics of blood feeding. We develop a mechanistic model for the dynamics of non-Newtonian fluid flow to describe the feeding process for blood feeders. Using available feeding and morphological data, we examine the relationship of feeding time to proboscis design, and(More)
Neuromechanics seeks to understand how muscles, sense organs, motor pattern generators, and brain interact to produce coordinated movement, not only in complex terrain but also when confronted with unexpected perturbations. Applications of neuromechanics include ameliorating human health problems (including prosthesis design and restoration of movement(More)