Paper has proved to be one of the most significant inventions by man. Over the centuries, it has gained tremendous importance as an object used in everyday life. But a major drawback of paper is that it is not durable. One needs to be extremely careful while using it as it might easily tear due to rough use or water. Also, paper instantly catches fire. This causes great inconvenience as paper is a medium to record events or store information. Despite the advent of technology, storing information on hard disks or CDs is not trusted as much as paper. Therefore Chinese scientists have come up with a way to produce fire and water resistant paper.
World’s First Fire and Water Resistant Paper
It might not be quite a coincidence that paper was first discovered in China around 2,000 years ago. And now the same country has come up with the advancement of paper. This breakthrough is aimed at making the paper a reliable medium for important documents or information of great significance. Zhu Yingjie is a researcher at the Shanghai Institute of Ceramics. This organization is affiliated with the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Yingjie along with his team of scientists has developed this highly durable paper. After a number of experiments when the invention finally took place, it was reported on the ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces. This is a peer-reviewed scientific journal of the American Chemical Society.
Science behind the fire and water resistant paper
Recently, there have been certain inventions which have claimed to be fire resistant or are less susceptible to fluids. But this is the first type of paper which has both the properties. In order to produce the fire and water resistant paper, the research team added a form of calcium called hydroxyapatite to change the structure of paper. This material which is found in animal tooth enamel and bones gives the paper special properties. The research team had been working to develop such a paper since the year 2008.
The research team states that this highly durable paper will be out in the market within three years. Currently, they are applying for more than a dozen patents in the country itself. This reliable medium of information is not only water resistant but also repels other fluids like tea, coffee, juice without leaving a mark on it. At the same time, this paper can withstand heat up to 200 degree Celsius which is fairly impressive. The cost of this paper is marginally higher than that of a regular A4 sized paper. But the team believes that as the demand and manufacturing of the paper will increase, the prices will also come down.