Plastic That Can Instantly Change Its Surface Texture

Xuanhe Zhao, an assistant professor at Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering, has come up with a new plastic material that can morph its surface texture in less than a second. The texture pattern can be transformed from dots and circles, to segments and lines.

What could this mean for consumer electronics? For one thing, if you have a smartphone cover made from this material, you can alter the surface to become more coarse for a better grip, or more smooth so it can sit evenly on a glass table.

Qiming Wang, a student on Zhao’s research team, explains that the polymer surface can be switched within milliseconds, and the “pattern sizes can be tuned from millimeter to sub-micrometer.”

Xuanhe further adds that the innovative technology can also produce useful gloves that can be tuned on-demand for various applications, such as climbing and gripping. Improvements in the future might be able to dramatically change the surface patterns to produce microfludics and camouflage materials.

Source: mashable.com

Tags: materials
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