Friday, February 11, 2011

Everybody now: Jump, Jump!

A fascinating little article about flea jumping (with video!) in the New York Times.

As we talk about insect locomotion, the flea is certainly one to consider closely (as these scientists recently have).


"When fleas jump, it is no ordinary leap. The insects can shoot as high as 38 times their body length, about three inches. And the acceleration is so intense that fleas have to withstand 100 Gs, or 100 times the force of gravity. “You and I pass out if we experience five Gs,” said Malcolm Burrows, an expert on insect jumping at the University of Cambridge."

They article also mentions Robert Hooke's early microscopic observations and illustration of these creatures in his book Micrographia (you can flip through it just as you would the real book at this link!)


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