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June 30, 2014 AT 2:00 am

The Stretchy Membrane That Could Replace Bubble Wrap #manufacturingmondays

General shot fragile2

Wired published a story on a new, reusable material, developed by Mireia Gordi Vila, that could replace bubble wrap and packing peanuts:

Gordi Vila began the Fragile project as an investigation into new materials. “I was basically looking at how to get the best performance with the minimum amount of material,” she says. “I didn’t know what it would be for, but I thought it had potential for protection.” The designer had been toying around with making super-thin layers of prosthetic silicone and polyester power mesh. It was only when she combined the two that she found the winning material. “If you just used the power mesh, then you lack the grip and cushioning element; if you use just the silicon it would break if you stretch it too much,” she explains. “It’s when you put them together that they have this nice symbiosis.”

THE DIFFERENCE IS GORDI VILA’S MATERIAL CAN BE REUSED FOR OBJECTS OF DIFFERENT SHAPES, WEIGHTS AND SIZES.

This elastic membrane is stretched between two types of frames: One 11×11 inch version and another that holds objects like bottles. Once your object is trapped, you place the membrane-wrapped good inside a standard box or suitcase like you might an object wrapped in tissue paper or bubble wrap. The difference is Gordi Vila’s material can be reused for objects of different shapes, weights and sizes. “It becomes this sort of bespoke packaging,” she says.

Read more.


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