Researchers at the University of Portsmouth recently discovered conical formations that resemble teeth that are incredibly strong on the shell of a small river snail. They have been carefully studied using atomic force microscopy, which allows you to penetrate into the structure of the material at the atomic level.
The material found in the shell processes is known as goethite, which is formed as it grows. Since the main food of snails is algae, these odontoid processes are necessary for the mollusk in order to peel them off from various surfaces, sometimes very durable.
According to the head of research, Professor Asa Barber, the fibrous structures of the dentate processes of the river snail can be used in mechanical engineering to create super-strong and at the same time lightweight units, for example, on Formula 1 cars, submarine hulls or aircraft.
Asa Barber believes that nature is a source of inspiration for scientists when developing ultra-strong materials. A vivid example is the web, the properties of which formed the basis for the creation of modern body armor.