Articles/Bionic Engineering

Chinese Science Bulletin

, Volume 54, Issue 4, pp 535-540

Microstructure and structural color in wing scales of butterfly Thaumantis diores

  • ZhiWu HanAffiliated withKey Laboratory for Terrain-Machine Bionics Engineering, Ministry of Education, Jilin University Email author 
  • , LiYan WuAffiliated withKey Laboratory for Terrain-Machine Bionics Engineering, Ministry of Education, Jilin University
  • , ZhaoMei QiuAffiliated withCollege of vehicle & motive power engineering, Henan University of Science and Technology
  • , LuQuan RenAffiliated withKey Laboratory for Terrain-Machine Bionics Engineering, Ministry of Education, Jilin University

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Abstract

The butterfly Thaumantis diores is a species in the Northeast of China. There are two kinds of scales on its wings, which overlap like roof tiles and completely cover the membrane. The SEM results showed that only Type-I scales play a key role in forming the blue structural color. Type-II scales have black chemical color. The cross section micro-configuration of scales is achieved by using the transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The brilliant blue generated through the multilayer microstructure is explained by the photonic crystal reason. The multilayer microstructure of the ridges is optimized to 1D Bragg stack for simulation. The reflectivity of the wing is measured by a spectrometer, and the experimental graph accord with the simulation curves basically. When this species fly, the wing’s color and brightness can change because of the transform between structural color and chemical color. The bionic color-changing design and the significance of this effect in video stealth or other fields are discussed at the end of the paper.

Keywords

butterfly scale structural color photonic crystal