Origami-inspired material designed to soften impact

Origami-inspired material designed to soften impact


In my lab we work on designing and
fabricating novel materials and structures. A large number of
mathematicians and computer scientists, engineers, are working on origami
nowadays. So imagine that you are going to use this origami structure as an impact
protection layer and you are applying let’s say, a hammer impact on one side. The compression wave will eventually change into a decompression wave while it’s
moving through this chain. So this video clip shows… at the beginning of the
impact we have this red color formed due to the compression, but immediately after
that we have a blue color due to the bouncing back motion of the origami unit
cell. But what is interesting is at a certain point we see the blue colour ahead
of the red colour. What you are going to feel on the other side of the structure is that
re-bouncing motion first, instead of the compressive force. So what you are going
to feel on the other side is more like pulling motion instead of compressive
motion. The applications can be abundant- for example, delivering a package using a
drone. You want to protect your medium from the impact from the ground. Another example can be a landing structure. We can convert
compression to tension so your whole structure can be well protected against
the impact. When I have visitors from outside and they look at
this variety of origami, they are just amazed to see how this interesting
origami can be integrated into state-of-the-art research. When we were
starting this project the mechanism seemed so counter-intuitive, so we were so excited so thrilled because we were not even sure
this can really happen.

7 thoughts on “Origami-inspired material designed to soften impact

  1. At the risk of being pedantic, it looks like the unit cell has cut edges; does this make it kirigami rather than origami?

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