Geckos' foot hair structure and their ability to hang from rough surfaces and move quickly

Kunio Takahashi, Jose Oriol Lopez Berengueres, Kenichi J. Obata, Shigeki Saito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Geckos generate the necessary adhesion force through their foot hair. The direction of the gecko's foot hair is not perpendicular to its finger surface, giving compliance to the hair. The effect of this compliance on the adhesion force is analysed and expressed theoretically in terms of contact mechanics. We conclude that the compliance of the foot hair is sufficient to generate the large adhesion force necessary for adhesion to rough surfaces, and that the structure of the seta with the spatulae allow the normal adhesion force to be controlled, allowing the gecko to make quick steps.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)639-643
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Adhesion and Adhesives
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Adhesion
  • Attachment
  • Biological adhesion
  • Compliance
  • Detachment
  • Gecko
  • JKR contact
  • Mechanism
  • Stiffness
  • Surface roughness
  • Wall-climbing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Polymers and Plastics


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