It’s people! They really should name the product “soylent wool” 😀
Wendelin Stark would like a new sweater. It’s cold in Zürich, where he lives, so he’d like a really warm one. Preferably one as cozy as cashmere.
Before long, Stark may be wearing one of his own invention, crafted with an ultra-soft wool-like yarn spun from all the stuff that’s left after an animal’s been slaughtered and processed. His team at the Functional Materials Laboratory at ETH Zürich, where he’s a professor, has spent four years creating such a fabric, and recently created a working prototype—of a mitten.
My preferred use for animal by-products is petroleum production. There was news years ago about someone who’d pioneered a contraption to produce petroleum/oil from chicken carcasses, wanting to employ them near chicken farms. I doubt it would be enough volume to fuel vehicles, but given the hurdles that the gelatin wool still has to address – petroleum production for textiles that already work would be a better use of resources to me. We are more dependent on petroleum products than we’d like to admit.
Somewhere in a dense forest of ash and elm trees, a hunter readies his spear for the kill. He hurls his stone-tipped weapon at his prey, an unsuspecting white-tailed deer he has tracked since morning. The crude projectile pierces the animal’s hide, killing it and giving the hunter food to bring back to his family many miles away. Such was survival circa 5,000 B.C. in ancient North America.
But today, the average person barely has to lift a finger, let alone throw a spear to quell their appetite. The next meal is a mere online order away. And according to anthropologists, this convenient, sedentary way of life is making bones weak. Ahead, there’s a future of fractures, breaks, and osteoporosis. But for some anthropologists, the key to preventing aches in bones is by better understanding the skeletons of our hunter-gatherer ancestors.