Engineered Synthetic Fiber – Stronger than Steel

Engineered Synthetic Fiber – Stronger than Steel

Prior attempts at creating synthetic spider silk resulted in lower numbers of β-nanocrystals, and therefore inferior properties. The new synthetic fiber has a tensile strength of “0.98 ± 0.08 GPa” – or about 1,000 MPa, about twice the tensile strength of steel. Since steel is relatively heavy, lighter materials may have a higher specific tensile strength without really being stronger than steel (but it makes for good headlines). When it comes to synthetic fiber strength, actually, Kevlar is perhaps a more meaningful comparison. Kevlar has a tensile strength of 1,100 MPa, higher than the new synthetic fiber.

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