Stronger by Stress Plastics

A new type of plastic developed at Duke University that actually gets stronger when it is stressed.

“The carefully designed molecular structure of the material is what gives it this unusual property. Like all plastics, this one has a backbone composed mostly of carbon. However, the carbon atoms are arranged in a series of triangles extending down in long chains with two bromine atoms at one point.
The researchers included a molecule called a carboxylate in this plastic to utilize those bonding sites. This cross-links multiple chains and increases the material’s strength at the site of damage. Because this material reacts to mechanical force instead of light, heat, or chemical exposure, it is called a mechanophore.”

This could be implemented into phones, to make more durable medical implants or even stronger prosthetics that resist wear and tear.

Source

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