This week BBC Nature reported on research by Dr Steven Portugal from the Royal Vetinary College in London into self-cleaning guillemot eggs.
SCRA colleagues on the Advanced Materials project at the University of Birmingham have been working hard behind the scenes with Dr Portugal to help him establish the reason why these strange, cone-shaped, eggs appear to be self-cleaning.
Dr James Bowen from Birmingham said:
Dr Portugal and I have worked together on this project since 2010, characterising dozens of eggshells using white light interferometry. Visualising the 3D topography of the eggshell surfaces led to the conclusion that the guillemot eggs exhibit self-cleaning behaviour because of their unique nano-scale conical features."
For more information on the research, you can read the full story on the BBC Nature website.