Dragon Silk, it sounds like a new video game or perhaps a trendy color but you’ll be amazed to learn what it really is- a material stronger than Kevlar that the U.S. military is looking into in an effort to create our troops’ body armor stronger and more protective than ever.
Kevlar has been the army’s choice of bullet-proof material for decades but that synthetic material is about to be replaced with a sustainable organic one known as ‘Dragon Silk’. Kraig Biocraft, a bioengineering company based in Michigan has just announced the contract with the U.S. Army which would award Biocraft with just over $10 million for the delivery of their new special shielding organic armor.
Kraig Biocraft has found a way to genetically alter silkworms to spin the fabric that is usually spun by spiders. Silkworms do not pose the same challenges that spiders do in creating and controlling mass units of productivity. The spiders, for instance fall into cannibalism and are extremely territorial leaving a spider farm out of the question.
One of the major advantages of utilizing spider’s silk is that it is elastic wherein Kevlar is almost completely inflexible causing difficulty in physical operations and maneuverability. “Providing material for this ballistic shoot pack initiative is an important next step for Kraig and spider silk. This contract reinforces the many significant potential applications for recombinant spider silk. Today is a great day for spider silk.” Said John Rice, COO of Kraig Biocraft.
Other uses for Dragon Silk include ” wound dressings, artificial ligaments, tendons, tissue scaffolds, microcapsules, and other applications “The global textile industry is also in for a new overhaul if Kraig Biocraft can successfully produce the material, we will be a step closer to the futuristic imaginations of our predecessor sci-fi writers.