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Silk: Spiders, silkworms, and advanced materials

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Silk fibres have evolved over millions of years to have excellent mechanical properties of strength and toughness, but is all the interest in these ‘super materials’ justified? After looking at the question of whether silk fibre properties can be scaled up to bulk materials, I outline some of our work on lessons to be learned from silk as a model protein material and natural silk structures such as cocoons.

This talk is part of the Surfaces, Microstructure and Fracture Group series.

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