Material (above) created in Paula Hammonds MIT lab by graduate students LaShanda James-Korley and Greg Pollock (below) will be spun into a spiderweb-like substance.
PHOTO / DONNA COVENEY
As a fiber, spider silk is so desirable that scientists have spent decades trying to find a way to mimic it. A team at MIT has been tackling the problem from two directions.
“The main goal is to be able to reproduce the enormous energy absorption and strength-bearing properties of spider silk," said Paula T. Hammond, an associate professor in MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering. "[We want] to be able to obtain a material in large quantities and cheaply … without DNA techniques, which are expensive."
Hammond’s graduate students Greg Pollock and LaShanda James-Korley presented papers on the research at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society on March 23-27. The work is part of a collaborative effort between Hammond and Professor Gareth McKinley of the Department of Mechanical Engineering.
Elizabeth Thomson | MIT
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At AKL’16, the International Laser Technology Congress held in May this year, interest in the topic of process control was greater than expected. Appropriately, the event was also used to launch the Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing. The group provides a forum for representatives from industry and research to initiate pre-competitive projects and discuss issues such as standards, potential cost savings and feasibility.
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Every three years, the plastics industry gathers at K, the international trade fair for plastics and rubber in Düsseldorf. The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will also be attending again and presenting many innovative technologies, such as for joining plastics and metals using ultrashort pulse lasers. From October 19 to 26, you can find the Fraunhofer ILT at the joint Fraunhofer booth SC01 in Hall 7.
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23.09.2016 | Life Sciences
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