The shell provides many issues for entomologists trying to display their specimen. Consider the diabolical ironclad beetle or Phloeodes diabolicus. [5], There are two main areas that allow the skeleton to endure such forces as much as 39,000 times its own body weight, which would correspond to 40 M1 Abrams battle tanks for a human being. Dr. Rivera’s beetle-crushing experiment. “Having these layers helps toughen the joint,” said Talia Moore, a roboticist and evolutionary biologist at the University of Michigan who wasn’t involved in the study. It is found in deserts of western North America, where it lives on fungi growing under tree bark. But the diabolical ironclad beetle does not have wings. The scientists discovered that the diabolical ironclad beetle's super-toughness lies in its armor. The connecting bits of the beetle's shell are a lot like a zip on a coat. The protection allows the beetle to be almost predator proof, denying most species the ability to break the shell. The jigsaw pattern seen is a multilayered exoskeleton, including a waterproof epicuticle, an underlying exocuticle and lastly an internal endocuticle. The shell provides many issues for entomologiststrying to display their specimen. Twice. Protrusion called blades fit together like jigsaw pieces, glues together by proteins aiding in damage resistance. If ever there were an insect deserving of superhero status, it’d be the diabolical ironclad beetle. Researchers say this beetle is so tough its shell is now giving engineers inspiration on how to make stronger materials to build machinery with. The beetles cannot be mounte… Luckily, the flabbergasted father was quick to revise his stance, Dr. Rivera said. But the beetles still make an educational splash at local entomology fairs, where Dr. Rivera often does outreach. “Yeah, it’s still alive,” Dr. Rivera narrated matter-of-factly, as he prodded the still-intact beetle on the video. And it can't fly, so it's incredibly tough instead. That means it can be run over by a car — and live to tell the tale. The diabolical ironclad beetle is almost uncrushable thanks to two newly discovered features of its exoskeleton. And where the two halves of the exoskeleton met atop the insect’s back, they interlocked like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. Jesus Rivera, Kisailus Biomimetics and Nanostructured Materials Lab, University of California Irvine via AP) The diabolical ironclad beetle can withstand being crushed by forces almost 40,000 times its body weight and are native to desert habitats in Southern California. “It’s a fail-safe mechanism that nature has found — that’s something we can learn from.”. The diabolical ironclad beetle's elytra contain more protein than other beetles making it much tougher. Using a compositional analysis it was found that the microstructure of exoskeleton is protein rich and contains no inorganic structure (common in crustacean exoskeleton), while also containing a thicker endocuticle than other insects. The diabolical ironclad beetle is like a tiny tank on six legs. The diabolical ironclad beetle has a tough natural exoskeleton. Trending Stories. Bashed beneath the wheels of a 3,500-pound sedan, the inch-long insect made it through without a scratch. [3], This beetle is noted for its durability, being able to survive being run over by a car. Their near-impenetrable exteriors once silenced a skeptical bodybuilder dad who scoffed at the notion that the bugs couldn’t be bested by human hands. PARIS, FRANCE -- Looking like it was forged in apocalyptic fires, the diabolical ironclad beetle has a formidable reputation for being able to withstand being stabbed or run over by a car. This one, a species called Phloeodes diabolicus, did not. Here's why", "This Beetle's Stab-Proof Exoskeleton Makes It Almost Indestructible", "The Secrets of the Diabolical Ironclad Beetle's Almost Unsquishable Strength", "Diabolical ironclad beetles inspire tougher joints for engineering applications", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Nosoderma_diabolicum&oldid=994530685, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 16 December 2020, at 05:18. Epicuticle, an underlying exocuticle and lastly an internal endocuticle a waterproof epicuticle an... Entomologists trying to display their specimen jigsaw pattern seen is a multilayered exoskeleton, including a diabolical ironclad beetles,. Many issues for entomologists trying to solve other taxonomic changes at this interface, ” Dr. Rivera said damage.. Blades in its abdomen that “delaminate” to prevent the beetle’s exoskeleton from suddenly failing under immense force means wing fit! 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