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Butterfly wing, SEM

Butterfly wing, SEM

Z355/1131

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Credit

STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Butterfly wing. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of scales on a small blue butterfly (Cupido minimus) wing. A butterfly wing is covered in many tiny scales. The scales are modified hairs, or setae, and are made of chitin, a common substance in insect exoskeletons. The iridescence of the colours of a butterfly's wings is produced by the diffraction of light by the microscopic structure of these scales. Magnification: x200 when printed at 10 centimetres wide.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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