properties” and materials made from them are elastic, flexible and strong. They also have therm
al, self-healing and electrical conducting capabilities, which gives the potential for some new applications.
The massive floating device created to clean up plastic in the ocean has broken
One could be to create a self-healing, recyclable fabric by making a coati
ng that is resistant to damage caused by washing machines. That could reduce the number of
clothing microfibers that end up being washed into the oceans, which contributes to microplastic pollution.
SRT proteins could also be used to make protective clothing for chemical and biological warfare agents, say the researchers.
As well as polluting our oceans, plastics have been found to emit greenhouse gases when they degrade.
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”I am a polymer scientist and want to minimize plastic pollution and create environmental sustainability,” explains Demirel.
Demirel acknowledges that more work is needed to scale up production of the materials. Synthetic SRT p
roteins currently cost at least $100 a kg to produce, but he hopes to bring the price down to a tenth of that.