For as long as researchers have been studying the bombardier beetle they have been baffled by their ability to produce an internal explosion in their abdomen and then expel a jet of boiling, irritating liquid towards their attackers while avoiding any physical damage. Now a team of researchers at MIT, the University of Arizona, and Brookhaven Laboratory have solved the conundrum. (Learn more: http://bit.ly/1GJygo0)

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Using high-speed synchrotron X-ray imaging the researchers were able to “see” the inside of the abdomens of living bombardier beetles during explosions.

Video: Melanie Gonick/MIT