Unraveling the Mystery of the Cucumber Tendril

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We’ve long marveled at the amazing holding power of tendrils like those of cucumbers, but scientists have been unsure about what makes them twist.  This very cool video employs time-lapse techniques and mechanical models to show us how.  From NPR’s  Science Friday.

[quicktime]http://s3.amazonaws.com/scifri-videos/lrg-cucumber2-083112.mp4[/quicktime]

Just click that little “play” button.  The video format is Quicktime, so doesn’t look like the Youtube videos we’re used to.

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