Urine Rubber Can Be Cut in Half and Still Reform to Original Shape

A new rubber compound that's made from fatty acids and a component of urine retains its shape to such a degree that it can be cut in half with a knife and then repair itself, retaining its original form. Imagine it: you break a plastic toy in half, only to have it seal itself back together, with the only downside being that your hands smell like you didn't wash them after going to the bathroom. Science!

With a consistency that's "a cross between silly putty and a rubber ball," the rubber can stretch to twice its length easily. When chopped in half, you can simply press the cut edges together again. After a short period, it can then stretch out to the same degree as before with no glue required to keep it together.

Takuzo Aida, a chemist at Tokyo University says that "the discovery is very close to [being used in] business," and possible applications could be in items such as tires or adhesives. It's still a bit far away from that, but this nearly-green technology looks like it has loads of potential for future uses. Bring on the pee rubber! [Nature via BBC]


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