Stanford Creates Highly Sensitive, Self-Healing Plastic Skin

Although there have been major advances for over a decade in synthetic skin and self-healing plastics, nothing compares to the sensitivity, degree of healing, or conductivity of the new self-healing skin created by researchers at Stanford Institute.

The researchers combined the “self-healing ability of a plastic polymer and the conductivity of a metal” to create the breakthrough new material.

The healing properties of the skin are extraordinary as the researchers have shown by taking:

“a thin strip of the material and cut it in half with a scalpel. After gently pressing the pieces together for a few seconds, the researchers found the material gained back 75 percent of its original strength and electrical conductivity. The material was restored close to 100 percent in about 30 minutes. What’s more, the same sample could be cut repeatedly in the same place. After 50 cuts and repairs, a sample withstood bending and stretching just like the original.”

The material is also sensitive enough to detect the pressure of a handshake, or the flexing of a joint.

Researchers believe the creation will be used for prosthetics, electrical and wire coating, as well as a protective plastic shell for various commercial products. Electrical components in hard to reach places would no longer need repairs, they could handle it on their own.

I say wrap absolutely everything in this material.  Clothes, cars, monitors, phones, walls, condoms… everything.




Sources and Related Readings:

Stanford News- Stanford’s touch-sensitive plastic skin heals itself

Wondergressive- Hairy Men Everywhere Rejoice: New Bandages Painlessly Remove From Skin

Wood Pulp is Changing the World

Wood pulp and dead twigs are being used to create nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC), an organic material stronger than cast iron that the wold is calling the new wonder material.   It is being used to create electronic displays, computer parts, and even body armor.

NCC is 8 times stronger than stainless steel and a fraction of the price.

Jeff Youngblood from Purdue University’s NanoForestry Institute explains that “”the beauty of this material is that it is so abundant we don’t have to make it.  We don’t even have to use entire trees; nanocellulose is only 200 nanometres long. If we wanted we could use twigs and branches or even sawdust. We are turning waste into gold.”

The new material is also harmless to the human body.

Goodbye chemicals, hello clean Earth.

A Breakthrough Futuristic Material: Silk

In this TED talk Fiorenzo Omenetto discusses the copious areas where society can economically and sustainably implement silk in breakthrough ways.  Silk can be used in almost any area of society including fiber optics, needles, cups, tattoos, medicine, sensory devices, and much more!

It seems like silk has the potential to single handedly usher in a new era of our materialistic culture.  Since it is easily biodegradable as well, why not?