8 March 2014 Including natural systems into the system engineering process: benefits to spaceflight and beyond
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Abstract
How did we get to the point where we don’t have time to be inspired by the wonders of Nature? Our office walls, homes and city streets are so plain that even when we do escape to a retreat with nature all around us, we may be blind to its magnificence. Yet there are many who have applied what can be known of natural systems (NS) to create practical solutions, but often definite applications for them are lacking. Mimicry of natural systems is not only more possible than ever before, but the education and research programs in many major universities are churning out graduates with a real appreciation for Nature’s complex integrated systems. What if these skills and perspectives were employed in the teams of systems engineers and the technology developers that support them to help the teams think “outside-the-box” of manmade inventions? If systems engineers (SE) and technology developers regularly asked the question, “what can we learn from Nature that will help us?” as a part of their processes, they would discover another set of potential solutions. Biomimicry and knowledge of natural systems is exploding. What does this mean for systems engineering and technology? Some disciplines such as robotics and medical devices must consider nature constantly. Perhaps it’s time for all technology developers and systems engineers to perceive natural systems experts as potential providers of the technologies they need.
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George Studor, George Studor, } "Including natural systems into the system engineering process: benefits to spaceflight and beyond", Proc. SPIE 9055, Bioinspiration, Biomimetics, and Bioreplication 2014, 905503 (8 March 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2048811; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2048811
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