In today's world, plastic takes up a lot of space, and scientists are searching for alternatives to this substance. Important steps were taken to find an alternative to plastic using wood fibers and spider webs. Moreover, these materials can be found almost everywhere.
It is not easy to find a material that is hard enough, durable, flexible and durable. To overcome this challenge, Alto University and VTT researchers have been inspired by nature.
In order to produce a truly biologically based product, the researchers went on to combine cellulose fibers found in trees with a protein found in spider webs. The result is a very durable and robust material. This material is expected to be a suitable substitute for plastics in the future.
Professor Markus Linder of the University of Alto said that nature offers great components to produce new materials, for example, using cellulose fibers and knitting nets. The advantage of these materials is that they dissolve more quickly and do not harm nature.
Researcher Pezhman Mohammadi in the study of birch pulp, cellulose nanofibers to break up and create a hard scaffold, he said. Simultaneously soft and energy-distributing spider web to the cellulose network leaked the researcher said, this substance used as an adhesive, he said.
The network samples used by the researchers were not taken directly from the spiders. These materials, which are used for the production of webs, were created in the laboratory by considering the protein structure in the spider webs.
Mohammadi, “Our study demonstrates the existence of new and variable possibilities in protein engineering. In the future, we may be able to make materials of different character for other applications, which may produce similar composites of a slightly different structure. We are currently working on new materials, impact-protected objects and other products. ” said.
The research was published in Science Advances.