Until now, the armored beetle has hidden a secret that has finally been discovered: How is this animal able to stay alive, despite the predators or the numerous abuses it faces?
The survival of this beetle, called Phloeodes diabolicus, has been discovered by researchers at the University of California, Irvine (UCI), among others, and is that it depends so much on his ability to play dead convincingly as well as its exoskeleton, which is one of the hardest and most resistant structures to crushing known in the biological world.
According to experts, your body is so indestructible, thanks to the material composition and architecture of your exoskeletonspecifically, his elytra that have evolved into a solid protective shield. At the same time, they have shown how engineers can benefit from these designs.
Analysis showed that the elytra consist of layers of chitin, a fibrous material, and a protein matrix. The devilish armored beetle’s outer shell has a significantly higher protein concentration, about 10% more by weight, which the researchers suggest contributes to the tougher elytra.
“The battleship is a ground beetle, so it is not light and fast, but it’s built more like a little tank “, said lead researcher and corresponding author David Kisailus, professor of materials science and engineering at UCI. “That’s his adaptation: he can’t fly, so he just stands still and lets his specially designed armor do its job until the predator gives up.”
Similarly, it has been found that the armored beetle can withstand a force of approximately 39,000 times your body weight. A 200-pound man would have to bear the crushing weight of 3.5 million kilos to match this feat.