Universal adhesion

A universal adhesive as sticky as a gecko foot has been developed by a team at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Al Crosby and colleagues have made a gecko-like reusable adhesive device. Rather than mimicking the tiny hairs that provide a massive electrostatic surface area that give geckos their remarkable ability to cling to almost any surface, Geckskin uses draping adhesion which derives from the gecko's integrated anatomical skin-tendon-bone system. In Geckskin, the researchers emulated this property by combining soft elastomers and ultra-stiff fabrics such as glass or carbon fiber fabrics. They can tune the relative stiffness of the composite for a range of applications.