Now This is a Muscle Shirt: Synthetic Muscle Protein Spun into Fiber is Tougher than KevlarThe future of the fashion industry is here! Sooner or later, you might be wearing fancy clothes that would not only make you look good; it would also protect you from harm.For years, scientists have developed an interest in muscle fibers and how they can be applied in various fields, like in soft robotics. Zhang and his co-authors of this study were also interested in muscle fibers. But instead of harvesting these from animals, these scientists from the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University attempted to produce synthetic muscle fibers from engineered microbes. The result is a synthetic material identical to proteins found in muscle tissue. It is said that this material is tougher than Kevlar.Learn more about this study over at the Washington University in St. Louis NewsRoom.Image:Fuzhong Zhang Lab#Kevlar #Fashion #SyntheticMaterials #MuscleFiber #Titin
Microbially Produced Artificial Amyloid-Silk Hybrid Protein Fiber is Stronger Than Steel and KevlarSpider silk is lighter than a feather but stronger than steel. It's thinner than a human hair but can handle weight hundreds of times its own. Its tensile strength (1.1 gigapascal) beats that of steel (05 gigapascal), and its toughness is comparable to that of Kevlar.But even nature can't compete with synthetic biology: a new lab-created artificial silk is even stronger. The new material is called polymeric amyloid fiber. It is produced by genetically modified bacteria in the lab of Fuzhong Zhang of Washington University in St. Louis.From WUSL The Source Newsroom:To solve this problem, the team redesigned the silk sequence by introducing amyloid sequences that have high tendency to form β-nanocrystals. They created different polymeric amyloid proteins using three well-studied amyloid sequences as representatives. The resulting proteins had less repetitive amino acid sequences than spider silk, making them easier to be produced by engineered bacteria. Ultimately, the bacteria produced a hybrid polymeric amyloid protein with 128 repeating units....The longer the protein, the stronger and tougher the resulting fiber. The 128-repeat proteins resulted in a fiber with gigapascal strength (a measure of how much force is needed to break a fiber of fixed diameter), which is stronger than common steel. The fibers’ toughness (a measure of how much energy is needed to break a fiber) is higher than Kevlar and all previous recombinant silk fibers. Its strength and toughness are even higher than some reported natural spider silk fibers.#spider #spidersilk #artificialspidersilk #steel #Kevlar #polymericamyloidfiber #protein #RecombinantProtein #amyloid #materialscience
'Nanoarchitected' Ultralight Material Can Stop Microparticles at Supersonic SpeedEngineers at MIT, Caltech and ETH Zurich have created a "nanoarchitected" ultralight material that can absorb impact and stop microparticles at supersonic speed:The researchers have fabricated an ultralight material made from nanometer-scale carbon struts that give the material toughness and mechanical robustness. The team tested the material's resilience by shooting it with microparticles at supersonic speeds, and found that the material, which is thinner than the width of a human hair, prevented the miniature projectiles from tearing through it.The material, which is more efficient than Kevlar, can potentially be used as armors, protective coatings, and blast-resistant shields in defense and space applications.#nanoscale #armor #carbon #KevlarImage: Carlos Portela et al.