Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers

Cameron P. Brown, Catalin Harnagea, H. S. Gill, Andrew J. Price, Enrico Traversa, Silvia Licoccia, Federico Rosei

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Spider silk is a fascinating natural composite material. Its combination of strength and toughness is unrivalled in nature, and as a result, it has gained considerable interest from the medical, physics, and materials communities. Most of this attention has focused on the one to tens of nanometer scale: predominantly the primary (peptide sequences) and secondary (β sheets, helices, and amorphous domains) structure, with some insights into tertiary structure (the arrangement of these secondary structures) to describe the origins of the mechanical and biological performance. Starting with spider silk, and relating our findings to collagen fibrils, we describe toughening mechanisms at the hundreds of nanometer scale, namely, the fibril morphology and its consequences for mechanical behavior and the dissipation of energy. Under normal conditions, this morphology creates a nonslip fibril kinematics, restricting shearing between fibrils, yet allowing controlled local slipping under high shear stress, dissipating energy without bulk fracturing. This mechanism provides a relatively simple target for biomimicry and, thus, can potentially be used to increase fracture resistance in synthetic materials.
LanguageEnglish
Pages1961-1969
JournalACS Nano
Volume6
Issue number3
DOIs
StatusPublished - 27 Mar 2012

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spiders
silk
Silk
Toughening
fibers
Fibers
fracturing
collagens
toughness
fracture strength
shearing
Shearing
Collagen
helices
Peptides
shear stress
Toughness
peptides
Shear stress
Fracture toughness

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Brown, C. P., Harnagea, C., Gill, H. S., Price, A. J., Traversa, E., Licoccia, S., & Rosei, F. (2012). Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers. ACS Nano, 6(3), 1961-1969. DOI: 10.1021/nn300130q

Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers. / Brown, Cameron P.; Harnagea, Catalin; Gill, H. S.; Price, Andrew J.; Traversa, Enrico; Licoccia, Silvia; Rosei, Federico.

In: ACS Nano, Vol. 6, No. 3, 27.03.2012, p. 1961-1969.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Brown, CP, Harnagea, C, Gill, HS, Price, AJ, Traversa, E, Licoccia, S & Rosei, F 2012, 'Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers' ACS Nano, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 1961-1969. DOI: 10.1021/nn300130q
Brown CP, Harnagea C, Gill HS, Price AJ, Traversa E, Licoccia S et al. Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers. ACS Nano. 2012 Mar 27;6(3):1961-1969. Available from, DOI: 10.1021/nn300130q
Brown, Cameron P. ; Harnagea, Catalin ; Gill, H. S. ; Price, Andrew J. ; Traversa, Enrico ; Licoccia, Silvia ; Rosei, Federico. / Rough Fibrils Provide a Toughening Mechanism in Biological Fibers. In: ACS Nano. 2012 ; Vol. 6, No. 3. pp. 1961-1969
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