Silkworm inspires quicker, simpler method of nanofiber production

Nanofibers have recently been utilized in many applications, ranging from wound dressings to high-strength composite materials. Scientists have now developed a faster and simpler method of producing those fibers, which was inspired by the silkworm.

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“Ultra-shock-absorbing” foam packs a plethora of carbon nanotubes

Carbon nanotubes have found use in everything from smart bandages to more efficient solar cells. Now, scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have used them in a helmet lining foam that offers better impact protection than regular foams.

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New class of ceramics can be thermoformed into shape like sheet metal

In what they hail as a “new frontier in materials,” engineers at Northeastern University have developed a new type of ceramic that can be fashioned into thin and complex shapes, opening up expansive new applications in electronics.

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New titanium alloy has highest specific strength of any 3D-printed metal

Engineers have developed a new 3D-printed titanium alloy with a unique microstructure that makes it ultra-strong. Not only is it stronger than other forms of titanium, but it has the highest strength-to-weight ratio of any 3D-printed metal ever made.

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Shredded masks and broken glass: Green ingredients for better concrete

Even slight adjustments to how we make cement and concrete can have a big impact on their environmental footprint, and as research continues to show, scientists working in this space are not short of ideas.

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UV upcycling treatment could help polystyrene recyclers break even

Polystyrene is a problematic material when it comes to recycling, but a team of Virginia Tech researchers is hoping to change this with a novel method that turns it into a product of relatively high value.

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New polymer removes dye from wastewater, and can be reused afterwards

In wastewater produced by the textile industry and others, dye is one of the primary pollutants. A newly developed synthetic polymer is capable of removing that dye from the water, plus it can be cleaned up and reused to treat more wastewater.

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Nano-sponges on graphene make efficient filters of industrial wastewater

Engineers at the University of Vienna have developed a new composite material that makes an efficient filter for removing organic pollutants from water. The system uses super-porous “nano-sponges” embedded on a sheet of graphene.

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Powerful new adhesive stays strong from freezing to boiling temperatures

A powerful new adhesive can grip strongly in extreme temperatures, from the deep freeze of liquid nitrogen to the sweltering heat of an oven. Better yet, it can be broken back down into its component parts and reused without losing strength.

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Plant-based plastic strong as PET, degrades into sugars in the environment

Plastics are tough, which is great when in use but not so good in the environment. Scientists have developed a new PET-like plastic derived from waste plant matter that can be chemically recycled or degrade into harmless sugars in the environment.

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