The secret power of a spider web

By eXplorer. Filed in Animal  |   
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A study conducted by scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, found that spider webs have the power five times stronger than similar yarns made of steel. The primary key that causes the spider web so strong is the material used in the form of threads of silk and intricate designs.

Spider web

Spider web

The test is performed by making a spider web with three other different materials. It turned out that spider silk yarn has a strength six times stronger and more resilient when hit by falling branches or high winds, compared to other materials.

Likewise, when given the additional burden, only one tangle of spider silk threads are damaged. With a very minimal level of damage, the spider just need to do minor repairs and not need to make a web from scratch again.

Surprising finding is that when scientists are reducing expenses by 10 percent from various points of the spider web. The load reductions did not lead to a spider’s web becomes weakened, but it makes a spider web is to be 10 percent stronger.

Rainwater at spider web

Rainwater at spider web

Markus Buehler, MIT scientists who participated in the study said that the spider web is becoming increasingly stronger if there are change of mechanical properties, when there is something on the net. In addition, he also said that the manufacture of nets consuming most of the energy of spiders. So the design needed to be able to prevent the occurrence of a major overhaul, when the nets are damaged. Silk thread which is the raw material the spider web can turn into soft or rigid depending on the load on the web. This is very different from natural or man-made fibers.

If viewed in detail, spider webs contain two types of silk thread. The first type is a stiff silk yarn and dry, compiled from the center toward the edge of the net. Whereas the second type is a thin silk thread and sticky or also referred to as “sticky silk”. This type of silk threads arranged in a circle, attached to the first arrangement of the dry silk. Sticky silk is useful to trap prey caught in a spider web. The researchers claim that their discovery could be used to design a new material with a magnitude of the latest generation.

One Comment

  1. Comment by Remke:

    You’re absolutely right! Nature always has a secret.
    We must learn so much to it! including spider…


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