New scientific findings and new technologies are facilitating materials that are increasingly lighter, more robust and more elastic. These are not only higher performing than their predecessors, but often cheaper, too. One example of this is a recently developed process which uses iron instead of platinum as the catalyst in chemical reactions. A common method for improving materials is enriching them with nano-particles, allowing materials to act as air filters or defences against insects. Meta materials, which absorb light and other electro magnetic emissions differently to natural materials, open up new possibilities for manufacturing lenses, among other things. Intelligent materials adapt to environmental changes and can even repair themselves.
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