Scientists at the University of California Irvine believe that they have found a way to use squid’s protein to create a stealth armor. Squids are animals with special ways of camouflage and protection. They use ink to escape from predators and can hide themselves thanks to a certain protein. The protein that can be found in squids is called reflectin. This protein helps a squid change color and reflect light. With the help of reflectin, scientists hope to create a perfected stealth armor that can help soldiers blend better with their surroundings.
Scientists have isolated the protein and grow it in a bacteria culture. The result was a thin film that closely resembles the skin of a squid. This film reflects light and changes color. The unique, light-reflecting coating is the first step towards a better stealth armor. The protein allows the coating to disappear and reappear when it is viewed with an infrared camera. Due to the wide spread use of infrared cameras in military surveillance, the disappearing abilities of reflectin are an important bonus. They can help shield soldiers that engage in stealth operations.
Due to the success of the experiments with reflectin, scientists have started searching for more materials for stealth operations. Nature is a gold mind when it comes to camouflage and blending in ones surroundings. Many animals, not just squids, might prove to be the key to creating an enhanced stealth armor. The final goal is to create an armor that can change its texture and color depending on the surroundings. It should be similar to a chameleon.
The protein reflectin that can be found in squids has been the key to creating a coating that reflects color and light. With its help, a better stealth armor can be created. Do you know another natural material that might help in military operations?
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