Permian Dragonfly Wing

Design Work, Research

In collaboration with the Entomology Department at K-State, I developed a recognition plaque in etched stainless steel for Floyd Holmes and Otto Wenger in honor of Floyd Holmes 100th birthday.  Based on a cast of the Fossil Forewing of an Extinct Permian Dragonfly, Megatypus schucherti, collected in 1939 near Elmo, the work was presented at Kansas State University on April 30, 2016.

This fossil is in the Kansas State University Entomology Department collection. It was found at Elmo in 1939 by Otto Wenger and Floyd Holmes, who were entomology students at KSU at that time. The obverse was presented to Frank Carpenter at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard, and the reverse, shown here, was kept at KSU. Image scanned from the fossil by Roy Beckemeyer in Sept. 1999.

In developing the graphic on the stainless steel several technologies were engaged including 3D printing, all of which could not match nature in its development of complex yet rigid structures.  Etching on stainless was finally selected as the manufacturing method once the tolerances of the fabrication were fully understood via the failed explorations.