Butterflies, masters of light (23 september 2004)

VPRO

Bright blue, enriched by a metallic spark, unfold the wings of the Menelaus Blue Morpho Butterfly. A color that shouldn’t be there, really, because this butterfly hasn’t a speck of blue pigment in its wings. The blue is a so-called ‘structural color’, created by the special microscopical structure found in the wings. One butterfly is the ultimate manipulator of light – the Parides or Cattleheart. It can do what we’re just looking into: Create photonic crystals. A pure photonic crystal can trap light.┬áThis is what we want. To master light.