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Polymers and soft materials news, February 2016

Self-cleaning gecko feet inspire micromanipulator

Micromanipulator based on graphene and polymers mimics the extraordinary ability of gecko's feet to grip any surface and self-clean.

Scientists have developed a shape-change polymer that can be triggered by body heat alone.

Origami-inspired graphene-based paper can self-fold into boxes, hand-like grippers, and walking devices.

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Efficient vertical charge transport in semiconducting polymers can be achieved by controlling the orientation of the polymer chains.

Adding a plasticizer into electrostrictive polymers offers an efficient way to improve their energy harvesting performance.

A novel hybrid polymer combines a covalent compartment that provides the skeleton with a supramolecular compartment that can wear away.

A new polyester-based, biodegradable material with built-in vitamin A can reduce scarring in blood vessels.

A new theory can predict exactly how much light is transmitted through a material, given its thickness and degree of stretch.

A novel material made of sticky, micron-scale rubber balls combines self-healing and reversible self-stiffening properties.

A thin, stretchable film offers a simpler, more cost-effective way to produce circularly polarized light for applications such as detecting cancer.

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By incorporating liquid metal droplets into an elastomer, researchers have created a highly stretchable, soft, multi-functional composite.

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