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Title:Born This Way
Author(s):Bello, Elizabeth
Abstract:The insects shown here are leafhoppers, each one no bigger than a grain of rice. As a scientist and researcher, microscopy has always fascinated me because it draws us into a world of fine detail and vibrancy. What you can’t see here are brochosomes, tiny molecular granules, on the nanoscale, that coat the cuticle of these stunning insects. They exhibit unique properties of superhydrophobicity and omnidirectional antireflectivity. Studying these properties in brochosomes is important to understanding and designing bioinspired materials with attributes of self-cleaning and antibiofouling, useful features for sterile environments such as operating rooms. While I normally visualize brochosomes using a scanning election microscope, I took this image under a stereoscope in support of creating a more diverse and inclusive community in science. This image celebrates the beauty of diversity and serves to voice my solidarity with people of color and members of the LGBTQ+ community in STEM.
Issue Date:2021
Rights Information:Copyright 2021 Elizabeth Bello
Date Available in IDEALS:2021-04-12

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