June 2, 2010
The way light hits a tropical butterfly's wings could make your bank
card safer, according to a new U.K. study.
That's because scientists are now able to mimic the cell structure of
butterfly scales to encrypt information on banknotes and other secure
cards, researchers at Britain's Cambridge University say.
"We have unlocked one of nature's secrets and combined this knowledge
with state-of-the-art nanofabrication to mimic the intricate optical
designs found in nature," said lead researcher Mathias Kolle on the
"We still need to refine our system, but in future we could see
structures based on butterflies' wings shining from a (pound) note or
even our passports," he said.
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