The is a rigid fold that has been used to simulate large solar panel
arrays for space satellites in the Japanese 1995 Space Flight Unit
. It was invented by Japanese astrophysicist Koryo Miura
. It is an example of the practical importance of rigid origami
, or treating hinges and rigid surfaces like the paper and creases in paper folding
A folded Miura fold can be packed into an area no larger than the size of one of the segments that make up the overall shape, its thickness
restricted only by the thickness of the folded material.
The fold can also be unpacked in just one motion by pulling on opposite ends of the folded material, and likewise folded again by pushing the two ends back together. This was beneficial to the aforementioned solar array as it reduced the number of motor
required to unfold it, reducing the overall weight and complexity of the mechanism.
- Peter Forbes, The Gecko's Foot: How Scientists are Taking a Leaf from Nature's Book, Harper Perennial, 2006, pp. 181-195.
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