Bionics (biomimicry, biomimetics, biomimesis) describes a science in which nature and its fundamental principles and methods are studied in order for these to be translated into technological applications.
It is an interdisciplinary science in which biologists collaborate with engineers as well as architects, philosophers, and industrial designers. The term “bionics” was coined in 1960 by the American Air Force Major Jack E. Steele at a conference in Dayton, Ohio. It arose from the conjoining of the first and last syllables of biology and technology. Bionics extends beyond the pure imitation of nature: it is inspired by the constructions, processes, and developmental principles of biological systems, but alters its findings for technical application. Industrial designers can thus for instance design intelligent products whose material and energy efficiency have been optimised for minimal consumption.