Scientists at MIT have figured out a way to produce a 3D-printed artificial bone that is just as lightweight and durable as the real thing. By analyzing the structural patterns found in natural bone and mother of pearl, the team has produced a 3D-printed material that mimics the structure and performance actual bones. The new material is part of MIT’s quest to create a line of super durable and efficient metamaterials that can be used in anything from construction to medical uses.
The artificial bone produced in MIT’s labs could be a step toward more sustainable manufacturing, enabling scientists to 3D print materials with durability that can last for years with fewer breaks and repairs. The remarkable material is especially strong because of the unique hierarchical pattern of its two main components — soft collagen protein and hard hydroxyapatite, which inspired researchers to recreate the process using two synthetic polymers.
Bone and mother of pearl are durable because of these patterns that are arranged naturally, so researchers took on the arduous task of replicating this biological arrangement with manmade materials. In a new paper titled “Advanced Functional Materials,” associate professor Markus Buehler describes the process of studying organic bone patterns and converting them into computer software designs. The team discovered the ideal combination of two synthetic polymers, which, when printed together using the bone patterns, made a strong and lightweight material. MIT’s bone material replication is just one step toward the development of super materials using 3D printing.
- 30 Comments >
- 1 Comments >
- 94 Comments >
12 Comments >
FDA finds majority of herbal supplements at GNC, Walmart, Walgreens, and Target don't contain what they claim - instead cheap fillers like wheat and soy powder
183 Comments >
19-Year-Old Develops Ocean Cleanup Array That Could Remove 7,250,000 Tons Of Plastic From the World's Oceans
- 119 Comments >
- 30 Comments >
- 39 Comments >
- 2002 Comments >
411 Comments >
BACK TO SCHOOL GIVEAWAY: Enter to Win a HP Pavilion dv6 Laptop and Green Prize Package (Worth $1155!)
- 391 Comments >
- 366 Comments >
- 351 Comments >
284 Comments >
LAST CHANCE: Enter to Win a Voltaic Laptop-Charging Solar Backpack Filled With Green School Supplies (Worth $500)!
281 Comments >
GIVEAWAY: Enter to Win a Sloan AQUS Grey Water Toilet System That Recycles Your Sink Water (Worth $189)!
- 247 Comments >
240 Comments >
LAST CHANCE: Enter Inhabitat's Back To School Contest to Win $250+ of Green Goodies Including a Voltaic Solar Backpack (Worth $129)
- 229 Comments >
- 221 Comments >
- 187 Comments >
WINDOWHOP It's easy to get depressed when your work schedule has you getting less sun than Edward Cullen (you've got the sickly pallor to match and it's not nearly as sexy on you). If you're lucky enough to at least have a window in your workspace, openREAD MORE >
Cutting back on your energy usage is one of the best ways to bring down your electricity bill. But did you know that making simple changes to not just your wattage consumption but the way your home retains and expels air can dramatically transform the wayREAD MORE >
Did you know that there are wolves living near you in almost every state in the country? Sadly most of these wolves are not living in the wild, but in wolf sanctuaries, which are conservation organizations set up to protect them and help grow their populationREAD MORE >
Namba Parks was conceived when Osaka Stadium closed down, presenting a great redevelopment opportunity for a new commercial district right next to the Namba Train Station, which is just one stop away from Kansai Airport. Since it's one of the first placesREAD MORE >
Top image: A child is put to work at a militia-run mine in Watsa. © Marcus Bleasdale/National Geographic Captured during a 2004 visit to the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, Bleasdale's images "tell the story of the country's mineral resourceREAD MORE >
You've all heard the tired mantras about changing your lightbulbs and recycling at home in order to save the planet - are you yawning yet? Many consumers think that going green is a gesture of self-sacrifice that often comes at great expense and inconvenienceREAD MORE >
BANANAS You might have heard that bananas are favored by athletes because they contain potassium and it's that same reason that makes them great hangover cures. When you're hungover, your body has lost a lot of potassium that needs to be replenished, so eatingREAD MORE >
Images © Graham King “The shopping cart tree symbolizes both generosity and abundance, as well as acknowledging those less fortunate where their whole world may be housed in a cart. We see shopping carts every day and take them for granted. IndividuallyREAD MORE >
TIP 1: Wrap Your Home in Insulation - "The More, The Better!" Proper insulation is probably the most important factor you can control in creating an energy-efficient home. I always say insulation is like chocolate, the more you have, the better! On average,READ MORE >
While conjuring up comfort in the home seems like a basic principle, it’s a far more complex process for architect & remodeling guru Sarah Susanka, who believes that comfort can significantly influence the sustainability of your personal abode. WithREAD MORE >
Two architects, Jos Burger and Wouter Keijzer of BK. Architecten, in charge of the renovation of the old church decided to preserve the atmosphere of the existing place with a spatial intervention that preserves its historical value. The three new floors wereREAD MORE >
For centuries, the Dutch have manipulated the landscape to move water away from their dwellings. Instead of battling the elements, Netherlands-based firm Waterstudio just announced plans to construct the world's first floating apartment complex in 2014! TheREAD MORE >