Utah State University’s newest USTAR hire, Randy Lewis, is featured in a four-part PBS NOVA series that started Wednesday, Jan. 19. The focus of the series “Making Stuff Stronger” examines emerging futuristic-type technologies that are enhancing material properties to literally “make stuff stronger.” Lewis, who is transitioning from the University of Wyoming, is bringing himself, his laboratory, research assistant and world-renowned capabilities. The thrust of Lewis’ research is based on what he calls “Spider Silk.” Lewis says the Spider Silk does not actually come from spiders, it comes from proteins generated by certain bacteria, goats and silkworms. Lewis says the materials are then used to create a strong silk-like fiber. He says the major efforts are or artificial ligaments, tendons, home repair materials, parachute materials, car air bags, tire cords and a variety of materials for sports clothing.
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