Personal Armor for Pressure

Personal Armor for Pressure

I remember watching a Japanese anime movie (The Secret World of Arriettywhere the main character, who was very tiny, picked up a woodlouse and stroked it like a cat. It made me realize how rarely we see these creatures treated with kindness in any media.

Now we are learning that creatures looking like woodlouse/roly-polys live in the deepest parts of the ocean. What is even more remarkable is that they make their own aluminum armor (!!!) so they don't fall apart. Because if they hit 4500 meters, the combination of crushing pressures, low temperature, and higher acidity can cause their exoskeletons to dissolve. The Hirondellea gigas (not pictured, but similar looking), can survive in the Mariana Trench, one of the deepest parts of the ocean at 7 miles. It survives with armor!

With the help of these creatures, scientists are stepping closer to understanding how it is possible to survive in some of the world's harshest environments.

#amphipods #extremeenvironments #aluminumarmor #poshtide

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