Quotations from Dr. Adrian Bejan, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Duke, in his 2012 book…,
… Design in Nature: How the Constructal Law Governs Evolution in Biology, Physics, Technology, and Social Organization*

“The spontaneous designs (structures) we see in Nature are not the result of chance. They arise naturally, spontaneously, because they enhance access to a flow of matter and/or energy over time.” Dr. Bejan calls this the “Constructal Law.”

“If you throw some rigatoni into a pot of boiling water, you can watch the tubes tumble around in a disorganized fashion.  After a few minutes, something amazing happens. Instead of lying flat, they begin to stand up straight, organizing themselves into a chimneylike pattern to facilitate the flow of heat and steam.”

“People, birds, and other animals are flow systems that carry mass on the surface of the globe; trees and mud cracks are flow systems for moving water from the ground to the air; universities, newspapers, and books are flow systems for the spreading of knowledge across the globe.”

“The Constructal Law predicts that even the grand sweep of evolution should occur because of the tendency of all open-flow systems to generate better and better designs (structures) for the currents of energy and mass that flow through them.  And by “better” we mean “larger and/or faster flow.”

“Popular wisdom grasps this truth in common sayings such as, ‘Doing the most with the least,’ and ‘Dwell as near as possible to the channel in which your life flows.’ ”

  • *Design in Nature was co-written with J. Peder Zane, Assistant Professor of Journalism at St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina