Biological cloaking design of silver fish offers
Brighter is not always better, especially for silvery fish
needing to evade predators. Yet sardines and herring flourish.
Researchers from Bristol's School of Biological Science have
discovered their secret -- a cloaking "technology" that twists the
laws of physics to their advantage.
Normally, when light reflects off a shiny surface it becomes
polarized, with the light waves all aligned to match the surface
off which they bounced. That's why a smooth water surface can
produce such a glare. Silvery fish are shiny because they have
multiple layers of reflective guanine crystals in their skin. Yet
they don't announce their presence to predators with a similar
flashy glare because their skin takes photonic science a step
There are actually two different kinds of guanine crystals in
these reflective layers. Each kind of crystal has a different
"refractive index," the property that determines the angle at which
light is reflected. Thus, as light is perfectly reflected from each
kind of crystal, the combined reflection contains light waves that
are not all aligned. Hence, there is perfect
reflection without polarization and without glare. Instead, the
fish seem to match and mirror their environment, remaining
virtually hidden in plain sight.
"We believe these species of fish have evolved this particular
multilayer structure to help conceal them from predators, such as
dolphin and tuna," explains Dr. Nicholas Roberts, coauthor of
"Non-polarizing broadband multilayer reflectors in fish" published
in Nature Photonics. "These fish have found a
way to maximize their reflectivity over all angles they are viewed
from. This helps the fish best match the light environment of the
open ocean, making them less likely to be seen."
This natural "cloaking technology" could be the biomimetic clue
leading to improved optical devices. "Many modern day optical
devices such as LED lights and low loss optical fibres use these
non-polarizing types of reflectors to improve efficiency. However,
these man-made reflectors currently require the use of materials
with specific optical properties that are not always ideal,"
explains lead author Tom Jordan. "The mechanism that has evolved in
fish overcomes this current design limitation and provides a new
way to manufacture these non-polarizing reflectors."
Biomimicry is the science of copying designs and processes found
in nature to produce technological innovations. Evolutionists
consider such amazing designs to be evolutionary success stories.
Fish with better camouflage would have a selective advantage
favoring survival, but fish possessing this feature are just a
variety of fish. Nothing about this discovery indicates that the
silver fishes' optical twist on physics came about through
molecules-to-man evolution. God created the principles of physics
by which the world operates as well as all kinds of life in it. And
if inventors are able to imitate the principles behind the shiny
fishes' cloaks to produce better optical devices, they will not be
imitating evolution but rather making use of one of God's designs.
The evolutionary insistence that designs like this are the products
of time, chance, and the laws of nature (the only factors in blind,
purposeless, directionless evolution) ultimately is an attempt to
rob God of His glory. This discovery, like many others, instead
reveals the creative and artistic genius of our glorious
Read the rest of this "News to Note" from Answers in
This column is printed with permission. Opinions expressed in 'Perspectives' columns published by OneNewsNow.com are the sole responsibility of the article's author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted therein, and do not necessarily represent those of the staff or management of, or advertisers who support the American Family News Network, OneNewsNow.com, our parent organization or its other affiliates.