Silk’s superpowers

Scientists are studying the strong and stretchy material in spiders, insects and even goats

By Rachel Ehrenberg, 00:00 AM May 6, 2009

Orb webs, such as those spun by the European garden spider, can snare large and fast-flying prey.

Orb webs, such as those spun by the European garden spider, can snare large and fast-flying prey.

OSF/COOKE, J.A.L./Animals Animals

Spider-Man isn’t the only person with an interest in spider silk. While Spidey uses the threads to zigzag from building to building, or to snare a bad guy, scientists are investigating silk for different reasons. And though researchers have learned a lot about silk by investigating spiders, insects such as caterpillars, ants and bees also have been studied for the...

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