A strong and transparent bioinspired nacreous composite

Ali Amini

Glasses have numerous applications due to their exceptional transparency. However, poor fracture and impact resistance limit their applications as an engineering material. One relatively recent approach to improve the mechanical properties of materials is through bio-inspiration. Structural biological composites such as nacre, the protective inner layer of mollusk shells, offer far superior mechanical properties relative to their constituents. This has motivated researchers to mimic the design principles in natural composites to create tough transparent materials. However, current bio-inspired materials lack fabrication scalability or offer poor optical transmission. Here, we are working on an efficient, scalable bulk process for developing optically transparent tough composites with nacreous structure.

McGill University is located on land which has long served as a site of meeting and exchange amongst Indigenous peoples. We honor, recognize, and respect these nations as the traditional stewards of the lands and waters on which we meet today. 

Dr. Allen Ehrlicher

Department of Bioengineering

McConnell Engineering Building

3480 University Street, Room 350

Montreal, Quebec H3A 2A7

Phone: 514-714-8239

Fax: 514-398-7379

Email: allen.ehrlicher@mcgill.ca

Office: McConnell Engineering Building 358