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Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: James C. Wyant
  • Vol. 47, Iss. 29 — Oct. 10, 2008
  • pp: 5235–5241

Color, iridescence, and thermoregulation in Lepidoptera

Stephen G. Bosi, Jacqueline Hayes, Maryanne C. J. Large, and Leon Poladian  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 47, Issue 29, pp. 5235-5241 (2008)

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This paper examines evidence for the hypothesized connection between solar thermal properties of butterfly and moth (Lepidoptera) wings, iridescence/structural color, and thermoregulation. Specimens of 64 species of Lepidoptera were measured spectrophotometrically, their solar absorptances calculated, and their habitat temperatures determined. No correlation was found between habitat temperature and the solar absorptance of the wings. It was found, however, that the iridescent specimens exhibited, on average, substantially higher solar absorptance than noniridescent ones.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(240.0240) Optics at surfaces : Optics at surfaces
(300.6340) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, infrared
(300.6540) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, ultraviolet
(300.6550) Spectroscopy : Spectroscopy, visible
(350.6050) Other areas of optics : Solar energy

ToC Category:

Original Manuscript: April 29, 2008
Manuscript Accepted: August 7, 2008
Published: October 1, 2008

Stephen G. Bosi, Jacqueline Hayes, Maryanne C. J. Large, and Leon Poladian, "Color, iridescence, and thermoregulation in Lepidoptera," Appl. Opt. 47, 5235-5241 (2008)

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