Like artists, engneers are inspired by many different things. Inspiration is often found in nature or everyday objects that most people do not pay much attention to. The Japanese art of Origami has recently been a source of inspiration for engineers. Engineers designing active materials and smart structures have found that the properties of this 17th century are form are very useful. The result of this has been some cool Futuristic Origami Engineering designs with unique and innovative characteristics. Many traditional design problems have been overcome by engineers inspired by Origami. Products and systems have been designed to bend, stretch and curve in ways that have never been thought of before.
The image above shows a remarkable Origami solar panel. A space saving design that incorporates the principles of Origami. If you were to lay all of those panels out on a flat surface, you would need a lot more room. This structure is inspired by simple folded Origami art.
If you would like to learn about the basic principles of Origami the above book is a great way to get started. It teaches an easy to follow three step system to guide you through the process. Check it out here ~ Absolute Beginner's Origami
There has been a lot of interest in Origami inspired engineering recently. The US National Science Foundation has supplied funding to eight different universities who wish to advance the field of Origami engineering.
Click check it out below to find out more about some of these cool projects!