Chinese scientists develop artificial spider silk
Chinese scientists have developed a kind of fiber that mimics the qualities of spider silk, according to the Science and Technology Daily Tuesday.
Scientists from Nankai University developed a simple synthetic method to engineer artificial spider silk using hydrogel fibers made from polyacrylic acid. The material achieved mechanical properties comparable to spider silk. It has high strength, slow elasticity and good scalability.
Spider silk is one of the strongest and toughest natural fibers and has superior mechanical properties. Scientists have been attempting to mimic its properties for a range of applications. Efforts have been made to develop artificial spider silk with silk protein, but the method is not suitable for mass production.
The research will allow new designs of novel fibers that can be used for energy absorption and impact reduction.
The research was published in the journal Nature Communications.