Materials

  • How to create living concrete

    Bacteria potential in a new world of construction.

    US researchers have created what they call a living concrete by combining sand and bacteria. It’s early days, but th...

    Materials January 15, 2020
  • Fold me a machine

    The continuing quest for technology inspired by kirigami

    For some time, engineers and mathematicians have been intrigued by the ancient Japanese art of kirigami (similar to t...

    Materials December 16, 2019
  • History

    Irving Colburn's shining light

    His ideas made mass production of glass for windows possible.

    The English language is filled with glass references: people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones; a particularly v...

    Materials December 15, 2019
  • OK nurse, tape him up

    Spider-inspired adhesive could replace surgical sutures.

    Spiders may be scary to some, but you can’t deny they’re clever and at times inspirational. Already this year Cosmos...

    Materials October 31, 2019
  • Protecting buildings during wildfires

    The usefulness of fire-retardant blankets.

    The early bushfire season in Australia has brought heart-breaking stories of loss – of human and animal life, and of ...

    Materials October 15, 2019
  • From chaos, sticky order

    Creating a substance that will stick to just about anything.

    This material might be the future of soft, nanomaterials.  Researchers from the North Carolina State University, in ...

    Materials October 14, 2019
  • Video

    Microfactory turns recycling on its head

    Transforming recyclables into useful plastic products.

    In 2018 China stopped buying our recycling. Then, in July of this year, Indonesia started turning it back by the cont...

    ASC Edits October 10, 2019
  • New gel could fireproof forests

    Proof-of-concept application might cut wildfires by 70%.

    A spray-on sticky gel might soon provide long-term protection against wildfires, researchers suggest.  In a paper pu...

    Materials September 30, 2019
  • Want invisible ink? Just put water in your inkjet

    But you’ll need this special paper to make it work.

    Agent 86 from Get Smart would have a field day with this new paper developed by Chinese researchers. A cheap and recy...

    Materials September 25, 2019
  • Mother of pearl inspires mother of all armours

    Researchers develop a plastic that’s much tougher than steel.

    US researchers have mimicked the outer coating of pearls to create a plastic they say is 14 times stronger and eight ...

    Materials September 17, 2019
  • Developing chameleon 'smart skins'

    The way they change colour is even smarter than we thought.

    The ability to rapidly change colour the way chameleons do – not to mention neon tetra fish and some butterflies – is...

    Materials September 11, 2019
  • Hemp is set to become the next big thing.

    Hemp might just prove to be a sustainable alternative.

    Since nations like the U.S. and Australia have lifted their bans on growing hemp, a revolution is brewing. Innovator...

    ASC Edits August 1, 2019
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