THIERRY BERROD, MONA LISA PRODUCTION / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY THIERRY BERROD, MONA LISA PRODUCTION / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Lotus leaf surface. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a leaf from a lotus (Nelumbo sp.) plant, showing the microstructures on its surface. These structures on the leaf's upperside, along with a waxy coating, help to repel water droplets better than any other material in nature. This helps the leaves to stay clean and stops fungi and other organisms from settling on them. This 'lotus effect' is being studied so that similar mechanisms can be implemented to produce 'self-cleaning' house paints.
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