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IBM Discovers New Class of Polymers

samzenpus posted about 3 months ago | from the brand-new dept.

IBM 90

Charliemopps (1157495) writes "IBM Research has published a new paper to the journal Science which describes a newly discovered class of Industrial Polymers that promise to revolutionize the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics. These materials resist cracking, have strength higher than that of bone, the ability to self-heal, and are completely recyclable. 'Codenamed Titan and Hydro, both of which came from the same reaction. One is rigid; it could become part of the next generation of computers. The other is a gel, so it it could be included in water-soluble nail polish.'"

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Can you make condoms with it? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013697)

Seriously disapointed this was not addressed in the brief.

Re:Can you make condoms with it? (4, Funny)

m2shariy (1194621) | about 3 months ago | (#47014203)

Yes. Even better, condoms which dissolve practically in no time so there is no need to dispose of the used ones!

Re:Can you make condoms with it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47015839)

Apparently they dissolve at really really low pH. You might be sticking your condoms down the wrong orifice.

Re:Can you make condoms with it? (1)

MrBigInThePants (624986) | about 3 months ago | (#47020971)

So says you...

Re:Can you make condoms with it? (2)

Buck Feta (3531099) | about 3 months ago | (#47015307)

Seriously disapointed this was not addressed in the brief.

It will be addressed in the briefs.

Re:Can you make condoms with it? (5, Funny)

rgbatduke (1231380) | about 3 months ago | (#47016533)

Re: IBM Memo 92148 (Anonymous Coward/Slashdot) Can you make condoms with it?

Hmm, intriguing idea. Almost certainly, but out of which polymer? A rigid "Titan" condom could certainly cover more than one situation (and the idea had considerable appeal when we ran it over the flagpole among our senior execs to see who saluted it and who turned away blushing) but the boys here in R&D said there might be trouble fitting it into a wallet. However, the marketing boys said that we wouldn't even have to change the name -- Titan Condoms (made by IBM!) would sell like hot cakes even if one did have to keep them standing on a shelf or nightstand next to the bed. Besides, if they don't sell to the general population, a bit of retooling and they'll make gangbusters self-propelled grenade casings (especially in the larger sizes) -- although legal says that calling them "Titan missiles" might infringe some trademark or other.

R&D was, however, quite excited at the prospect of a brush-on "Hydro" condom -- one would never need to take it off. We had a number of volunteers for a pilot project, and it turns out that in fact, one might never be able to take it off. Apparently "Hydro" is also being considered as a nearly indestructible super glue because of all of its dangling, um, "bonds" but this was being investigated by another team. There were, unfortunately, a few drawbacks pointed out by those party-poopers over in legal and their paid shills from the medical profession, so the idea was tabled for the time being, which basically means that we're still going ahead with the project but looking for just the right test population -- males on dialysis or willing to undergo a critical surgical alteration of the liquid waste elimination pathway, for example. However, we're a lot more interested in large federal or state contracts; this is (for example) an intriguing idea for our prison systems, if we can get it past Engineering.

Keep up the good work, AC, and we are gratified that you are making this valuable suggestion anonymously, as it saves us from the tedious process of running you down and making you sign release forms or having you assassinated so that we can cleanly patent the idea as our own. Now you'll have to excuse me -- I have to go empty my cloaca.

Irving Bentabit
IBM (R&D)

iPm? (1)

turkeydance (1266624) | about 3 months ago | (#47013705)

from the mainframe masters to material magicians?

Re:iPm? (1)

sillybilly (668960) | about 3 months ago | (#47014859)

Or more like patent collector fanatix. Seriously, polymer reasearch happened in 1890-1990. I have yet to see much new since. How about nanotubes! Yay! Or nano this nano that. It's a miracle! Like my nano-dick! Stronger than bone. Seriously, I was disappointed when reading the word "bone." I was expecting something like stronger than Kevlar.

Re:iPm? (1)

3.5 stripes (578410) | about 3 months ago | (#47017215)

Your prayer has been answered, you can make the polymer stronger than bone by adding nanotubes!

Quoth the article:

"Remarkably, this polymer remain intact when it is exposed to basic water (high pH), but selectively decomposes when exposed to very acidic water (very low pH). This means that under the right conditions, this polymer can be reverted back to its starting materials, which enables it for reuse for other polymers. The material can also be manufactured to have even higher strength if carbon nanotubes or other reinforcing fillers are mixed into the polymer and are heated to high temperatures."

Re:iPm? (1)

sillybilly (668960) | about 3 months ago | (#47023051)

One neat thing in polymer science lately is what every other idiot spends his free time poking at, it's a smartphone, driven by OLED's, organic LED's, but that's like not even polymer science at its core, but organic chemistry optoelectronics, and may have more in common with pharmaceutical science than polymer science.

The problem with most recylcing is sorting (4, Insightful)

gurps_npc (621217) | about 3 months ago | (#47013719)

That is, Iron makes a great recyclable because it is magnetic.

Other metals do OK because we can melt them down and scrape off the slagg, effectively 'distilling' them.

All other recyclables are far less valuable because of the ton of work we need to do sorting garbage to get them back.

Plastics and organics on the other hand tend to be very hard to recycle because if you try to melt them, they burn.

One more 'recylcable' that requires a lot of sorting is pretty worthless, unless it has a quality like magnetic or distillable

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (4, Informative)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 3 months ago | (#47013871)

Chopping up all the plastics and suspending them in water, oil, etc fluids is how some places separate them. It's a kind of "distillation" I suppose.

Also, eddy currents can be induced in aluminum, tin, etc. other metals to sort them by tossing them around.

Crushed glass can be sorted by optical systems which let pieces fall and puff jets of air at certain pieces.

In Houston (and lots of other places) we don't have to sort our recyclables. Soon we may not even have to separate the recycling from the trash: [houstontx.gov]

One Bin For All (OBFA) is the next evolution of recycling. It will allow
Houston residents to place all trash, recyclables, and compostables
in one bin, providing for a much higher rate of resource recovery.

Since the two polymers "come from the same reaction" I'm guessing there's a way to separate them...

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (2)

sumdumass (711423) | about 3 months ago | (#47014061)

Do a video search for single stream recycling. That is for not separating your recyclables at the curb side.

It uses a process that sorts similar to how you described with glass. Except it has a few more interesting parts to it. Most major waste companies have them in the large cities in the US now.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | about 3 months ago | (#47013907)

On the other hand, you can burn mixed organics and extract useful energy. Granted it produces CO2, but it's not like we aren't going to burn lots of organic chemicals anyway.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014271)

Do may plastics dissolve in petroleum or some other common solvent?

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (4, Interesting)

l0n3s0m3phr34k (2613107) | about 3 months ago | (#47015365)

yes, in fact I've used ping pong balls and nail polish remover before. Cut up the ping pongs, put them into a dish of nail polish remover, and it melts. I then dip whatever tool handle or such into the mix, and then pull it out and wait a few seconds. Once the polish remover evaporates, it turns back into the plastic, giving me an easy way of coating various objects cheaply and quickly. I'll admit I saw the idea on the BBC's "Bang Goes the Theory", a show everyone on here should be watching!

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | about 3 months ago | (#47016681)

Now my question is what kind of plastic are ping pong balls made out of because there has to be a cheaper source. This is a really neat idea that I will have to keep in mind. Also just use mineral spirits instead of nail polish remover since nail polish remover is just mineral spirits with a better smell.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47017267)

nail polish is acetone (sometimes with water and fragrance), not mineral spirits.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

Richy_T (111409) | about 3 months ago | (#47017551)

Yes. And it will dissolve many plastics. PVC water piping might suit the GP's needs and price point though there are likely other cheaper sources.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47019799)

A quick google search says ping pong balls are made of celluloid or other similar high bouncing plastics. Celluloid is very flammable, so be careful what you use it for. And as already said, nail polish remover contains acetone not mineral spirits.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

l0n3s0m3phr34k (2613107) | about 3 months ago | (#47126803)

All plastics are cellulose...and the acetone is pretty flammable too, even in the "vapor flash cloud" type of mini-fireball explosion LOL. Amazingly, even though I smoke at my workbench while doing this, I have yet to catch anything on fire by accident...

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

l0n3s0m3phr34k (2613107) | about 3 months ago | (#47126787)

yeah, I was surprised how expensive they where. And the remover is only under $1 for 10-12oz...the clear ones don't smell nearly as horrid as the "colored" remover, I often have to leave the room if my gf breaks that out. I use that remover for all sorts of "cleaning", I have to clean off scissor blades after cutting duct tape, works pretty well...but once I spilled some on a keyboard and it melted the plastic "springs" underneath the keys!

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

Bite The Pillow (3087109) | about 3 months ago | (#47014351)

This is not a solution to the recycling problem. It is a solution to a different problem, which happens to be easy to recycle.

I'd say this is the opposite of worthless, if it solves a non-recycling problem. Especially if it also has a recycling solution that we may not yet know about because people JUST INVENTED IT.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 3 months ago | (#47015721)

Recyclable is not the be all and end all, in fact it became pretty much a scam for mass consumption because of the energy it waste. Built for life, a life times use, is what needs to be promoted. Not fashionable poseur status, but someone you buy once and use for the rest of your life. Something easily repairable, refillable and reusable, something that only needs to be made once and will last you the rest of your life and even be able to be passed onto your children et al. Now that really saves resources and pollution and a whole lot of breaks within seconds of the warranty expiring fucking frustration.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 3 months ago | (#47017601)

Built for life, a life times use, is what needs to be promoted.

Well, no. That made sense when new inventions tended to come at a rate much slower than the human lifespan. Now they come much more rapidly, and technologies are often outdated before you even get them into your hands. Even with our throwaway culture on average only about 25% of an automobile's energy consumption is in its production.

We could be making things like garden trowels to a higher minimum standard, but the things that really take a lot of energy to produce, like a car, tend to consume most of their energy over their lifetime and not in production, or already have a pretty long lifetime like a house.

Houses, on the other hand, really are built like shit and not designed to be recyclable. The average house is so far behind technology it's mind-numbing. A new house consumes a staggering amount of energy in production and the shitbox houses of today can barely be counted on to last forty years.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 3 months ago | (#47018069)

I gather you have never ever heard of a 90 day warranty and it's significance with regard to the reliability or durability of a product and how many products come with a 90 day warranty, 90 fucking days dude, they aren't inventing new stuff anywhere near that fast.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 3 months ago | (#47020075)

Most stuff with a 90 day warranty lasts more than 90 days.

Most of the electronics I buy, even ones without a brand name stamped on them, live long enough to be obsoleted.

This illustrates the real reason for the 90 day warranty: people will shit on your product and claim it had shit on it out of the box.

Granted, I've had some real lemons. Most of them failed within the warranty. Some of them didn't. Sucks, but it happens.

If more people were scrupulous in general, warranty terms would be more fair.

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47016933)

>> All other recyclables are far less valuable because of the ton of work we need to do sorting garbage to get them back.

Why does my garbage service REQUIRE that all my recyclables be mixed into the same can? If it is truly a lot of work to separate the recyclables then they should offer separate bins which allow me to keep it sorted in the first place!

Re:The problem with most recylcing is sorting (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about 3 months ago | (#47017387)

It was a long while ago, but I remember watching about some nifty devices that used a very specific range of microwave radiation, and it could turn tires, plastic bags, and a huge range of plastic based objects back into a strange oily carbon soup that could be reused. For this device to work, they just threw garbage in it, and metal and oil would come out the other end, separated. We need that kind of device, but working large scale.

IBM == Weyland-Yutani (2)

Saija (1114681) | about 3 months ago | (#47013721)

An humongous corp patenting a lot of thing on fields such as robotics, ia, materials..

Re:IBM == Weyland-Yutani (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013953)

A tear came into my eye from the thought. There is progress and the future is as fascinating as in the movies. Samsung, for example, went after generic medicines quite recently. There is more to this life than endless investor value grabs and meaningless dot.coms, after all.

Re:IBM == Weyland-Yutani (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 3 months ago | (#47014435)

oh really, just thing of the aweful weapons they could make with these technologies. and super soldiers.

Re:IBM == Weyland-Yutani (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013979)

Walmart is going to buy out IBM?

Captcha: inequity

Revolution! (1)

oldhack (1037484) | about 3 months ago | (#47013745)

Revolutionary nail polish will revolutionize whole lotta other stuff in a wholy new and exciting way.

Every few months.... (3, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | about 3 months ago | (#47013773)

... you hear about a new revolutionary breakthrough in such-and-such a field, but nothing ever comes of it. </jaded>

Re:Every few months.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013819)

To be fair to IBM, they didn't claim in the press release this would "revolutionize" anything. The hyperbole was added in the Slashdot summary.

Re:Every few months.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013845)

And there hasn't been anywhere near the amount of testing needed to find out if these materials are going to end up being harmful to humans and/or the environment at some point, nor if they will hold up to the test of time. Hey, we have this great material that does all kinds of stuff, but it only lasts for 2 years before needing to be replaced.

Re:Every few months.... (5, Funny)

NettiWelho (1147351) | about 3 months ago | (#47013829)

Yes, thats what makes switching these vacuum tubes so bothersome on my PC.

Re:Every few months.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014259)

forget the tubes, you just can't get good crystal replacements for my radio anymore...

Re:Every few months.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47015629)

Why not? Just sand those lil black thingies in yer electronics til you uncover their shiny heart. place yer pin onto it and there ya go!

Re:Every few months.... (1)

judoguy (534886) | about 3 months ago | (#47017771)

Sure, if you have access to unlimited funds you can use valves. I have to make do with Mercury filled pipes!

Re:Every few months.... (2)

Tailhook (98486) | about 3 months ago | (#47014095)

There may be people reading your post using a retina focused prism projector on their wireless, voice controlled eye-wear. But I doubt it; folks like that have better things to do than read your drivel.

Re:Every few months.... (2)

ratnerstar (609443) | about 3 months ago | (#47014399)

Stop being so cynical, this is going to revolutionize the field of water soluble nail polish.

Re:Every few months.... (3, Informative)

russotto (537200) | about 3 months ago | (#47014441)

... you hear about a new revolutionary breakthrough in such-and-such a field, but nothing ever comes of it.

True, but off the top of my head IBM has within my lifetime come up with two which have actually worked: GMR hard drives (though not GMR itself), and copper interconnect.

Re:Every few months.... (2)

ratnerstar (609443) | about 3 months ago | (#47014463)

Copper interconnect? I barely even know 'er interconnect!

nail polish? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013783)

... describe a newly discovered class of Industrial Polymers that promise to revolutionize the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics.

The other is a gel, so it it could be included in water-soluble nail polish.

Not to put too much of a damper on the nail polish news junkies here, but surely there's a more exciting application for this second revolutionary polymer than nail polish you need to reapply every time you wash your hands.

Which Is Which? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013837)

Lemme guess, Titan is the water-soluble one and Hydro is the super-strong one?

according to the article... (3, Interesting)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 3 months ago | (#47013849)

This stuff breaks down when exposed to acidic water.

So it certainly won't be very durable outside anywhere on the east coast of the US thanks to the acid rain.

And indoors, well just watch out for the Pepsi Syndrome!

Re:according to the article... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013995)

strangely iron, steel and many other materials we build houses and vehicles out of also break down when exposed to acidic water.

perhaps we could simply paint this new polymer to protect it?

Re:according to the article... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014769)

Protip: After you whack a guy, you can get rid of the evidence by exposing it to acidic water!

Re:according to the article... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014889)

caustic solutions work better than acidic.

Re:according to the article... (1)

fractoid (1076465) | about 3 months ago | (#47015425)

Aw crap, meant to hit 'insightful' and accidentally clicked 'redundant.' Posting to undo.

It always frustrates me when I see new technologies bashed for obvious weaknesses with even more obvious workarounds, especially when those weaknesses are shared by the incumbent technology. It's like the old "batteries have acid and produce hydrogen which can explode hurr hurr" argument against electric cars, when last I checked petrol was also pretty good at exploding.

One word (1)

BenSchuarmer (922752) | about 3 months ago | (#47013859)

"plastics"

are you listening? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47015179)

There's a great future... Think about it, will you think about it? Enough said. That's a deal.

Re:One word (1)

TemperedAlchemist (2045966) | about 3 months ago | (#47015293)

I agree! WHERE IS MY TRANSPARENT ALUMINUM.

And thank you filter, maybe I like yelling.

Re:One word (2)

l0n3s0m3phr34k (2613107) | about 3 months ago | (#47015393)

you mean this? [wikipedia.org] Here's [phys.org] some more info, dated from 2009. It's 4x stronger than normal glass, it's basically a type of see-though sapphire...but it's been around for awhile, it's "big use" is armored windows.

Did they say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013873)

...POLY...MERS!?

We're ALL screwed!

here it comes (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 3 months ago | (#47013889)

What's the over-under odds on how long it'll take before they discover X% of the population is allergic to it or it causes cancer?

Re:here it comes (1)

l0n3s0m3phr34k (2613107) | about 3 months ago | (#47015401)

Dunno the odds, but I'll bet they already have research that it DOES cause problems but will just "forget" to mention that part...

Quite the anti-climax..... (2)

shri (17709) | about 3 months ago | (#47013891)

Starting off with ... "fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics"

But the real application is ... "water-soluble nail polish.'"

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (5, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 3 months ago | (#47014111)

Starting off with ... "fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics"

But the real application is ... "water-soluble nail polish.'"

This is what I don't like about submitting to slashdot. It reads like I wrote that. Like that's a quote from me. That's not what I submitted at all. They basically cut the last half of my post off, typed something totally different and provided an entirely different link. For once the editors did edit the story before posting it, but instead of improving it they mangled it.

In the paper, if you read it, this isn't really about the 2 materials the editors stuck in. Those are just the result of the real breakthrough. Which is IBM has designed modeling software that can design plastics to order. Previously they would just create a plastic, play with it, and see what it was good for. This is how accidents like Silly Putty and Post-it notes came about. But with this new software you can put in characteristics you want the plastic to have and it will spit out which plastics to make and how to make them. It will be revolutionary to every field in industry. The 2 materials mentioned in the Editors link were what they created with the software as a test. Their properties, while interesting, are incidental to the real discovery which is the software.

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014869)

What is the link you submitted?

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (1)

pla (258480) | about 3 months ago | (#47014885)

That's not what I submitted at all. They basically cut the last half of my post off, typed something totally different and provided an entirely different link.

But really, don't those applications directly address two of the critical unsolved issues in Materials Science? How to make iPhones survive an unbraked atmospheric reentry, and how to best have your makeup accidentally come off when you wash your hands? I know those keep me up at night worrying...

If course, I think we give Slashdot too much credit to actually attribute that to a real live editor's less-than-useless intervention. They didn't edit that, it just counts as a new feature of Beta - Take some random sponsor-of-the-week's link and merge it with otherwise coherent submissions. Revlon probably submitted an ad that included some BS technobabble about high-tech age-defying polymers, and the submission system automatically detected your post as the most relevant to the ad, albeit in a laughably inappropriate way.

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (1)

shri (17709) | about 3 months ago | (#47014923)

Thank you. Now that summary would have given me a lot more incentive to read the linked article. Was a bit put of by the nail polish bit -- simply because as much as I know that IBM maintains a very diverse range of research teams, nail polish would not have been something their geeks or PR department would have highlighted. :)

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (1)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 3 months ago | (#47015039)

... and provided an entirely different link.

That all sounds very interesting. I would like to read about it. Could you please provide your original link?

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (2)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 3 months ago | (#47015213)

That all sounds very interesting. I would like to read about it. Could you please provide your original link?

It usually gets lost in the clutter, but AFAIK, every /. story includes a link to the original submission.
Under the section You may like to read:
Submission: IBM discovers new class of Polymers [slashdot.org]

The submitted summary (in that link) is nothing like what the GP describes, but that's all there is to see.

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47016097)

Who changed IBM's "...can potentially transform manufacturing and fabrication in the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics.." into "...promise to revolutionize the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics."? Because that's not exactly honest editing either.

Re:Quite the anti-climax..... (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 3 months ago | (#47014125)

Well, I guess the lady astronaut wants to look good when sporting her new ipod mini on the bus before going to the launch pad to get her way to the ISS?

Grammar Nazi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013923)

"IBM Research has published a new paper to the journal, Science in which the describe...

That comma is not needed, and the magazine title should be italicized at least.

Re:Grammar Nazi (1)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about 3 months ago | (#47014257)

That comma is not needed, and the magazine title should be italicized at least.

That comma is not needed.

Re:Grammar Nazi (1)

ZorglubZ (3530445) | about 3 months ago | (#47018859)

Actually, there should be one more comma:

"IBM Research has published a new paper to the journal, Science, in which the describe...

Terrible journalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013939)

This is an article about chemicals.

Tell us the goddamn chemical formulas!

Re:Terrible journalism (2)

joe_frisch (1366229) | about 3 months ago | (#47014035)

And the mechanical properties, like yield strength, and modulus in some useful units like psi or Pascalls or something, not comparing it to "bone". At one point they say 1/3 the strength of steel, but steel varies by huge amounts depending on the alloy. And was that number with reinforcement or not??

Otherwise its:
we have a new plastic. We won't tell you what it is or what its properties are, except that its thermosetting (like a million other plastics) and it doesn't survive mildly acidic water.

Terrible journalism (1)

benarius (1545703) | about 3 months ago | (#47016395)

This is a polymer formed from a diamine and paraformaldehyde which would yield formaldehyde upon depolymerisation. It will make a network of hemiaminals initially which then give poly(hexahydrotriazine)s when heated, ie 6 membered rings with alternating carbons and nitrogens. Heating an aminal (NH-C-OH) would eliminate water which is driven off giving the ring.
Different diamines could be used, either PEG diamines to give water soluble materials or aryl diamines. Not sure if part of the thermosetting is due to Mannich reactions (Aryl ring + -N=CH2) in the case of aryl diamines.
Note I only read the abstract.

Water-soluble nail polish? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47013965)

I'm not exactly the heaviest user of nail polish in the world, but I have to think that making it water-soluble is a terrible, terrible idea.

Thank God we haven't hit peak nail polish (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014021)

Technology always comes through!

Abstract (2)

sensei moreh (868829) | about 3 months ago | (#47014081)

Abstract: ahref=http://www.sciencemag.org/content/344/6185/732.abstract//rel=url2html-17437 [slashdot.org] http://www.sciencemag.org/cont...>

MOD PARENT UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47017189)

Might as well copy-paste abstracts into the summary, vs this hyperbole futuristic dreamscape text that we have now.

CORRECT ABSTRACT LINK (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47017271)

Here is the abstract [sciencemag.org]

Nitrogen-based thermoset polymers have many industrial applications (for example, in composites), but are difficult to recycle or rework. We report a simple one-pot, low-temperature polycondensation between paraformaldehyde and 4,4-oxydianiline (ODA) that forms hemiaminal dynamic covalent networks (HDCNs), which can further cyclize at high temperatures, producing poly(hexahydrotriazine)s (PHTs). Both materials are strong thermosetting polymers, and the PHTs exhibited very high Young’s moduli (up to ~14.0 gigapascals and up to 20 gigapascals when reinforced with surface-treated carbon nanotubes), excellent solvent resistance, and resistance to environmental stress cracking. However, both HDCNs and PHTs could be digested at low pH (

Empty Promise (1)

penguinoid (724646) | about 3 months ago | (#47014115)

promise to revolutionize the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics.

Maybe the headline should wait until they do revolutionize the fields of transportation, aerospace, and microelectronics? Such a small proportion of discoveries that promise to revolutionize a field are ever heard from again.

Materials and Batteries. (1)

Jim Sadler (3430529) | about 3 months ago | (#47014447)

So many new materials are popping up that it is very hard for a business to take action as the next new thing might be a better path for a company to take. Batteries are the same way. We seem to have a better battery breakthrough about once a week. How does a large business take advantage of such a situation. Any machines or software that people purchase may well appear as a dumb move as better materials pop up instantly.

Va-poo-rizer? (1)

marcgvky (949079) | about 3 months ago | (#47014481)

I am so sick of these announcements. Send samples to Underwriters and USPTO and lets test it out. These press releases are usually pumped by the marketing folks to provide a lift to the share price, prior to a major financing event.... yawn. The yellow rain, it's usually urine. LOL

Portal 2? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47014709)

Why does this feel like some long lost intro text to Portal 2?

Nail polish? (1)

Hamsterdan (815291) | about 3 months ago | (#47015193)

What the heck does it have to do with transportation, aerospace and microelectronics ???

Re:Nail polish? (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | about 3 months ago | (#47015421)

You don't travel much, huh?

On any public transport system, there is a significant number of people who spend the journey time applying makeup, nail varnish and other vanity products.

Better nail polish... (1)

hughbar (579555) | about 3 months ago | (#47015529)

Been waiting all my life for that. I can go out in the evening now.

Nail polish? SRSLY? (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 3 months ago | (#47016213)

There's talk of the gel one being used in time-release drug delivery systems, but you went with the "nail polish" angle?

Idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47016477)

"has published a new paper to the journal, Science"

Why the comma?

Oh wait... AMERICANS.

Questions. (1)

godel_56 (1287256) | about 3 months ago | (#47021731)

From second link:

At low temperatures (just over room temperature), another type of polymer can be formed into elastic gels that are still stronger than most polymers, but still maintains its flexibility because of solvent that is trapped within the network, stretching like a rubber band.

Hmm. I wonder what the solvent is, and would it be harmful as it slowly evaporates?

Titan is, naturally, the stronger one. According to IBM, it has bone-like strength (its measurements were similar to the organic material that frames our bodies) and roughly one-third of the tensile strength of steel. When IBM researchers combined Titan with 2% to 5% carbon nanotubes, however, they found they could make a material three times stronger than the polyamides sometimes used on current aircraft.

OK, that seems potentially impressive.

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