Open Access Senior Thesis
Bachelor of Science
Physics & Astronomy
© 2008 Lua Del Campo
This research is an analysis of the explosive seed dispersal of Impatiens pallida fruit. Data was taken using high-speed video and analyzed using LoggerPro video analysis software. From the videos we discerned a qualitative model for dehiscence, a description of how the process unfolds, and from our data we deduced quantitative values for the velocity, momentum, and energy of the system. We were also able to glean a lower bound of Young’s modulus E of the fruit tissue. These results and the tools of analysis that generate them are the foundation for the development of a theoretical model of the plants motion. Our results also provide insights into Impatiens pallida’s evolutionary history by explaining its seed dispersal mechanism. A secondary benefit of this research is providing ecologist’s with new tools to analyze ultra-rapid movements in plants and fungi. These tools of analysis will assist in defining a plant’s or fungi’s evolutionary context and the ecological significance rapid motion plays.
Del Campo, Lua, "The Biomechanics of Ballistochory in Impatiens Pallida" (2008). Pomona Senior Theses. 26.