As light as plastic and as strong as steel. Innovative material from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed a new material that until now was considered impossible to create.
It is a 2DPA-1 polymer that self-assembles into sheets. This assembly takes place in a special solution and the creators have already patented the process they used to create the material. All previously known polymers could only form one-dimensional chains.
The main properties of the new material are its low weight, high strength and ease of production. Just imagine that to deform this material you need 4-6 times more force than bulletproof glass or 2 times more than steel. And this is at the same weight as plastic, i.e. compared to steel its density is 6 times less.
Another key feature of the new material is its gas-tightness. It consists of monomers that are joined together in such a way that molecules cannot get between them. This will make it possible to create ultra-thin coatings that completely prevent the penetration of water or gases.
The idea that we will be able to build robust houses out of plastic seems too bold, but with the claimed characteristics the intended scope of 2DPA-1 could be very wide, from covering car parts and phones to building bridges, buildings, etc.