Addressing Resource Efficiency using Biomimetics: Design and Development of an EcoTRIZ Model

Addressing Resource Efficiency using Biomimetics: Design and Development of an EcoTRIZ Model

Meenakshi Piplani1, Tarun Kumar2

1M.S. Ramaiah Institute of Technology, Bangalore, India; 2Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India

Nature and human activities have often conflicted with each other leading to disastrous consequences for humans in the long run. One such instance, is that of Climate change, where human interference caused global environmental ramifications. The unchecked extraction of minerals and oil from the earth, has affected overall availability of that resource causing groundwater and air pollution. Therefore, man-made activities and engineering designs have so far competed with nature which has resulted in the deterioration of ecosystems and the devastation of resources. Instead of ignoring these contradictions, there is a need to explore methodologies that look at addressing them to arrive at systems that amalgamates the best features of both- Natural sciences and Engineering field.

This paper examines bio-inspired designs and methodologies to formulate a framework that effectively transfers knowledge from the biology domain to the engineering design domain. A critical analysis of bio-mimetic applications in engineering and design was conducted. Subsequently, a brainstorming session of 20 design students was also done to produce designs using TRIZ methodology. Furthermore, the framework has been used to improve resource efficiency of engineering designs through innovative integration of features from natural and living systems.

The results show that the EcoTRIZ framework is versatile and can be employed in enhancing design solutions for modern engineering problems. The model can be expanded to include life cycle efficiency also, in design. It helps in fusing nature’s effective designs with human’s engineering needs and demands in a sustainable manner.