Meeting Abstract

43.3  Thursday, Jan. 5  Flying in two dimensions PRAKASH, Manu*; DONALD, Kim; Stanford University ; Stanford University manup@stanford.edu

Surface of a pond provides an ecological niche which is exploited by a large number of species capable of locomotion on a fluid interface. Here we describe the discovery of constrained flight in two dimensions as a novel mode of locomotion used by water lilly beetles. Because water lilly beetles are also capable of three-dimensional free flight, this novel 2D locomotion behavior provides us a with a unique model organism to explore both the transition between two and three dimensional flight and the associated energetics, in the same organism. Here we present a comparative analysis of this transition in terms of wing stroke angles associated with two and three dimensional flight. Special attention is paid to the dynamics and energetics of flight in two-dimensions, focusing on the interaction of the wing strokes with the fluid interface and the capillary and wave drag associated with two-dimensional propulsion. We will finally discuss some of the implications of this discovery to evolutionary origin of flight.