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Steel ‘Velcro’ @ New Scientist

For all its usefulness, Velcro hardly inspires excitement. But German engineers have taken inspiration from the mild-mannered fastener to create a version of the hook-and-loop concept with enough steely strength for extreme loads and environments. A square metre of the new fastener, called Metaklett, is capable of supporting 35 tonnes at temperatures up to 800 ºC, claim Josef Mair and colleagues at the Technical University of Munich, Germany. And just like everyday Velcro it can be opened up without specialised tools and used again.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. zof says:

    looks more like a torture device…… cool either way

  2. cdreid says:

    freaking awesome. I go through a couple rolls of heavy duty velcro a year the stuff rocks.

  3. Kieran says:

    First of all I’d like to point out to anyone that doesn’t read the New Scientist link that this ‘steel velcro’ can only hold 35 tonnes when that load is applied in the same plane as the strips. When the load is applied perpendicular to the strips it can support 7 tonnes. Secondly I fail to see how exactly this can work as advertised. Normal velcro is only separated once enough force has been applied that the strips cannot support, to release these strips of ‘steel velcro’ would require tremendous force, evidentially up to 7 tonnes as long as you have the option of pulling it perpendicularly. I see no other way this stuff could be separated apart from if pushing the strips together somehow un-hooked the hooks, but then that would make the stuff almost useless.

  4. not Kieran says:

    looks like it bends 180 degrees backwards to me in the photo. I would imagine that is how you release it with a lot less pressure than 7 tons. the 7 tons is the total area strength. I’m sure it’s reduced when you peel it away… just like normal velcro. go buy some heavy duty plastic velcro and try to release it as a whole instead of peeling it back.

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