Swedish scientists have developed the world’s most resistant biomaterial made of biodegradable artificial fibers. Apparently, the material is more resistant than steel. The research was conducted by Daniel Soderberg from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, in Stockholm, Sweden.
The ultra-resistant fabric is made from cellulosic nanofibers (CNF), the main construction material of plants. Through a new manufacturing technique, scientists have succeeded in translating the distinctive mechanical characteristics of the cellulose nanofibers into a gross, ultra-lightweight product that would be an eco-friendly substitute for plastic in airplanes, cars, and furniture manufacturing, as well as in other industries.
“Our new material even has a potential for biomedicine, because cellulose is not rejected by your body,” said Soderberg.
Swedish researchers created the world’s most resistant biomaterial using cellulose nanofibers
Researchers have begun with commonly marketed cellulose nanofibers of only 2 to 5 nanometers in width and up to 700 nanometers in length. Then, the scientists suspended the nanofibers in water and passed them through a narrow channel reamed into steel. Via two perpendicular stream pairs, extra deionized water and low-pH water penetrated the channel on both ends, compacting the stream of nanofibers and speeding it up.
This technique called hydrodynamic approach assisted in the alignment of the nanofibers to the proper direction. Also, no adhesive or other constituents were involved, the nanofibres being bonded together to create a compressed thread, which was held in place by supramolecular forces of the nanofibres, including electrostatic and Van der Waals forces.
Readings demonstrated a tensile rigidity of 86 gigapascals (GPa) for the newly created biomaterial and a tensile resistance of 1.57 GPa.
“The biologically produced cellulose nanofibers manufactured here are 8 times stiffer and have higher strengths than natural dragline spider silk fibers,” explained Soderberg.
Scientists expect that the new world’s most resistant biomaterial manufacturing costs can match those of heavy-duty synthetic textiles.