Researchers Measure Elasticity of Intact Spider Web
For the first time, researchers have measured all of the elastic properties of an intact spider’s web, drawing a remarkable picture of the behavior of one of nature’s most intriguing structures. The work could lead to new “bio-inspired” materials that improve upon nature.
As fibers go, there’s never been anything quite like spider silk. Stretch it. Bend it. Soak it. Dry it out. Spider silk holds up. It is five times stronger than steel and can expand nearly a third greater than its original length and snap right back like new. Ounce-for-ounce spider silk is even stronger than Kevlar, the man-made fiber used in bulletproof vests.
It would be understandable to think that science knows all there is to know about the remarkable physics of spider silk, but the truth is far from that. Now, using a long-known-but-underutilized spectroscopy technique, a Stanford researcher has shed new light on the mysteries of spider silk.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2013/02/researchers-measure-elasticity-intact-spider-web