The Crystallography of Honey Bees

We can learn a lot from observing the wisdom of nature, and Honey Bees offer intuitive insights that we can translate to human social interactions, personal development and soul evolution, and innovative technologies.

Socially, Honey Bees interact using "Hive Mind" or "Swarm Intelligence," which is a form of real time intelligent system with feedback loops. Hive Mind is related to the Noosphere layer of consciousness of the interconnected mind in that both think together in collective systems to amplify the intelligence of groups. This allows Honey Bees to scout a large area of the environment, discriminate between the available options, and converge on an optimal solution or condition to establish their hive colony.

The Hive Mind is analogous to an approach used to crystallize macromolecules, called Broad Matrix Sampling. During this process, a range of crystallization conditions are explored, including salt ions, precipitants, pH, macromolecule concentration and others, to cover a large space within the multi-dimensional matrix of crystallization variables (Figure 1). Broad Matrix Sampling increases the likelihood that an energetically favorable crystallization condition will be identified, and if conditions are defined that nucleate crystals, the crystallization conditions can be analyzed for trends in variable to extrapolate and optimize the quality of the crystal.

Figure 1. Broad Matrix Sampling for Crystallization Conditions. In this experiment, a logarithmic scale of protein concentration is varied to observe whether the crystallization conditions will nucleate crystals. Crystallization conditions or 10^-3 and 10^-4 protein concentration were identified to produce diffraction-quality crystals, while lower concentrations produce undersaturated crystallization drops and higher concentrations produce microcrystals.

Honey Bees use magnetite crystals to sense magnetic fields in the environment and navigate to a suitable location ot build their bee hive colony. This process of sensing and navigating the magnetoelectric fields of the Earth is called magnetoreception (Figure 2). During the mechanism of magnetoreception, clusters of magnetite crystals are tethered to ionotropic transmembrane receptors embedded within the cell membrane of neurons. As the magnetite crystals are attracted towards the magnetic field, the ionotropic transmembrane channel is opened to trigger a flux of ions into the neuron's axon and propogate an electrochemical action potential.

Figure 2. Magnetoreception using magnetite crystals tethered to ion channels for neurotransmission.

Once a suitable location is identified to establish the hive colony, the Honey Bees begin to synthesize honeycomb structures. Interestingly, the Honey Bees structure the honeycomb following hexagonal geometry, the same fundamental geometry observed in the hexagonal crystal system for the scientific discipline of crystallography. This hexagonal honeycomb crystal lattice produces emergent properties, which have been characterized as the Cavity Structure Effect (Figure 3A). Serendipitously, a researcher happened to rest on an area of land directly above an underground Honey Bee colony, during which he experienced thermal, numbness, and pressure sensations.

Figure 3. A. (Left panel) Cavity Structure Effect produced with hexagonal honeycomb. B. (Upper right panel) Hexagonal crystal lattice of chitin insect shells. C. (Lower right panel) Hexagaonal crystal system observed at the microscopic scale during crystallography experiments and fractally throughout nature and the universe.

Similar peculiar observations have been made in nature, including for the hexagonal geometry of chitin insect shells. The hexagonal crystalline lattices of chitin structures create anti-gravitational properties, presumably by directly interacting with the quantum field and creating curvatures in spacetime, that are useful for technological and medical applications. This hexagonal geometry corresponds to the hexagonal crystal system observed in nanomaterials in crystallography, as well as throughout the microscopic and macroscopic scales of nature and the universe. The Quantum Crystalsphere will be engineering biomaterials with new emergent properties using these sacred geometries observed in nature and crystalography as our inspiration! For collaboration interest, please contact:

So, how will you integrate nature's wisdom of the Crystallography of Honey Bees to evolve your consciousness?

1) Hive Mind, Swarm Intelligence, and Broad Matrix Crystallization Sampling

2) Magnetoreception of the environment

3) Crystallographic geometries and symmetries for emergent properties


[1] Liang et al. (2016) Magnetic Sensing through the Abdomen of the Honey Bee. Scientific Reports 6, 23657.

[2] Shaw et al. (2015) Magnetic particle-mediated magnetoreception. Royal Society.


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