Carbon fibres are traditionally expensive to produce and unsustainable. Scientists are finding ways to make carbon fibres from biomaterials instead of fossil fuels. Carbon fibres are thin threads of almost pure carbon crystals, they are five times stronger than steel and twice as stiff. Carbon fibres are traditionally expensive to produce and unsustainable. Scientists are working on turning lignin, a substance found in most plants and a byproduct of making paper, into carbon fibres. The bio-based carbon fibres could be used to build lightweight electric cars and buildings. Scientists are working on carbon fibres made from biomaterials instead of fossil fuels in an attempt to create a version that does not generate carbon emissions. Bio-based carbon fibres could be used to build lightweight electric cars with greater battery range, according to senior scientist Dr Erik Frank. In architecture, concrete could be reinforced with carbon fibres instead of steel , allowing ultra-thin structures to be built. "It’s a wonder material because it is very strong and yet light compared to metal," said Frank, who is head of carbon fibre development and new materials at the German Institutes of Textile and Fiber Research in Denkendorf, southern Germany. However, "the carbon footprint […]

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