A University of Akron professor has developed a super-strong, reusable adhesive that works on numerous surfaces.
A company he co-founded has been awarded a $736,000 National Science Foundation grant to prepare the adhesive, spun from polymer fibers, for commercial use.
The product, developed by Josh Wong, a professor of mechanical engineering, was inspired by the ability of geckos, spiders, insects and other creatures to stick to walls and hang upside down from surfaces.
Potential customers include industrial and consumer adhesive suppliers, automobile and aerospace manufacturers, biomedical and other industries, the university said.
Uses include hanging large murals on walls in hotels and restaurants or joining metals in auto production without the use of bolts.
The dry adhesive doesn’t smell or leave marks and works on surfaces including glass, wood, metal and paper.
It is also strong – and could join metals or attach large objects to walls. Videos shows the tape sticking together under water and lifting an 11-pound computer monitor.
The adhesive is affixed to surfaces with low-peel adhesion, meaning it takes less force to remove.
The adhesive has become the basis for a company called Akron Ascent Innovations, co-founded by Wong and Barry Rosenbaum, senior fellow at UA’s Research Foundation.
The company has received previous science foundation awards and support from the Ohio Third Frontier Technology Validation and Startup Fund.