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Canadian researchers advance the production of less brittle glass [Registered]

Researchers at the McGill’s Department of Mechanical Engineering have successfully taken inspiration from the mechanics of natural structures like seashells in order to significantly increase the toughness of glass. “Mollusk shells are made up of about 95 per cent chalk, which is very brittle in its pure form,” says the lead researcher Prof. François Barthelat. “But nacre, or mother-of-pearl, which coats the inner shells, is made up of microscopic tablets that are a bit like miniature Lego building blocks, is known to be extremely strong and tough, which is why people have been studying its structure for the past twenty…

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