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August 4th, 2010
Auckland-based nano-technology start-up company Revolution Fibre Ltd does.
Using an improved version of a laboratory model made by government science agency Plant & Food and a $456,000 TechNZ investment grant, the firm is building a commercial-scale electro-spinning machine that can do just that.
The extremely fine nano-fibres are up to 500 times thinner than a human hair and initial applications are expected in clothing, filtration, reinforcing, electronics and packaging. The fibres are extremely strong due to the molecular alignment of the polymer particles.
Revolution Fibre's first commercial product will be air filter mats for New Zealand ventilation company, HRV. The biodegradable mats are created by diffusing the nano-fibres onto a plate made from reformed potato starch.
"It is a good use of something that would normally be chucked away," says Revolution Fibre technical director, Iain Hosie. "What is good about biomaterials is it means you stay away from plastic and petrochemical-derived products."
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