Math + Nature = Beauty!
Fractals are never-ending patterns. The beauty of fractals is that their infinite complexity is formed through the repetition of simple equations. These repeating patterns are displayed at every scale.
Frederi Viens, a program director at the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Division of Mathematical Science, explains in a recent NSF news release, “If I wanted to construct a fractal, I would take a simple rule, like adding three small triangles on the edge of a big triangle […]. Then, the rule is repeated again and again.”
Most people are extremely familiar with fractals because they are seen throughout the natural world. Here are some of the most stunning examples of fractals in nature.
Credit: Alexey Kljatov/flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)
2. Unfurling Fern
Credit: Thomas Brown/Wikipedia (CC BY 2.0)
3. Nautilus Shell
Credit: Chris 73/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)
4. Gecko’s Foot
Credit: Bjørn Christian Tørrissen/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)
5. Angelica Flowerhead
Credit: Chiswick Chap/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)
6. Frost Crystals
Credit: Schnobby/Wikipedia (CC BY_SA 3.0)
7. Lightning Bolt
Credit: Postdif/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)
8. Romanesco Broccoli
Credit: cyclonebill/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 2.0)