Fold Here First

Origami, the ancient Japanese art of paper folding is being re-born as a powerful tool for researchers, engineers, scientists and mathematicians as they tackle problems as diverse as protein folding, lifting unwieldy instruments into the Earth's orbit, and working out the best way to fold an airbag into a car's steering column.

Mathematician Professor Ian Stewart gets to grips with some paper and fundamental theorems, and discovers how chemistry, physics and architecture unfold in the creases before him.

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2004041320050930

Origami, the ancient Japanese art of paper folding is being re-born as a powerful tool for researchers, engineers, scientists and mathematicians as they tackle problems as diverse as protein folding, lifting unwieldy instruments into the Earth's orbit, and working out the best way to fold an airbag into a car's steering column.

Mathematician Professor Ian Stewart gets to grips with some paper and fundamental theorems, and discovers how chemistry, physics and architecture unfold in the creases before him.

2004041320050930

Origami, the ancient Japanese art of paper folding is being re-born as a powerful tool for researchers, engineers, scientists and mathematicians as they tackle problems as diverse as protein folding, lifting unwieldy instruments into the Earth's orbit, and working out the best way to fold an airbag into a car's steering column.

Mathematician Professor Ian Stewart gets to grips with some paper and fundamental theorems, and discovers how chemistry, physics and architecture unfold in the creases before him.

20050930

Origami, the thousand-year-old Japanese art of paper folding, is usually regarded as an attractive way to make delicate models of birds and flowers, but a new generation of mathematicians and computer buffs are expanding the craft into extraordinary new territory.

In the process, origami is being recast as a powerful tool for researchers facing problems as diverse as protein folding and lofting unwieldy instruments into Earth's orbit.