Towards Novel Biomimetic Building Materials: Evaluating Aboriginal and Western Scientific Knowledge of Spinifex Grasses (2008–2012)
Biomimetic theory advocates drawing from nature to find new technical solutions. This project will apply and advance biomimetic theory and produce practical outcomes in the context of Aboriginal traditional knowledge and new materials. Spinifex grasses have been largely ignored as a sustainable resource, despite their widespread distribution throughout Australia, and unique biology that has evolved within harsh environments. This project examines material properties and sustainable applications for spinifex using innovative methodology. Aboriginal traditional knowledge combines with Western science to evaluate spinifex properties in the context of traditional Aboriginal uses, ecology, sustainable harvesting, and novel biomimetic materials.