In Massachusetts, textile company Polartec, and biotech company Kraig Biocraft Laboratories announced plans to bring to market the first fabrics made from spider silk. Initially developed for specialized military applications, these first-of-their-kind materials made from recombinant spider silk will eventually service the global market for high performance textiles and apparel.
Among the strongest fibers produced in nature, scalable and cost-effective production of spider silk represents a ‘holy grail’ of material science. Kraig possesses the exclusive right to use patented spider silk gene sequences in silkworms, which is the first way to mass produce these fibers cost effectively and responsibly.
These fully renewable, biodegradable and biocompatible ‘super fibers’ are thin, lightweight, flexible, resilient, extraordinarily strong, and display strength-to-weight ratios more comparable to aramid fibers than other current performance fibers. In apparel applications, the possibilities of recombinant spider silks are particularly exciting, realizing unprecedented combinations of physical properties such as luxurious feel and breathable comfort with top durability.