CAM Colloquium: Jane Wang (Physics, Cornell University) - Insect Flight: from Newton’s Law to Neurons

Friday, February 9, 2018 at 3:30pm

Frank H. T. Rhodes Hall, 655

Abstract:
We have been seeking  mechanistic explanations of the complex movement of insect flight.  Our recent analyses of insects’ balancing act predict the role of a steering muscle of a fly in regulating flight stability.  The physics of flight informs us about the function of insect’s internal machinery that orchestrate its flight, and sheds light on the neural feedback circuitries underlying insects’ fast reflexes for balancing in air.   In this talk, I will discuss how a dragonfly recovers from falling upside down and how a fly makes minute wing adjustments  to stay upright.

Bio:
Jane Wang is a professor of Physics and a professor of Mechanical and Aerospace engineering at Cornell University. She has devoted much of her work to understand how insects fly and why they fly the way they do. Her recent work makes new connections to neural science in the study of flight reflexes. 

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