The Latest and Biggest Developments in Paper

Paper has come a long way since it was first discovered and used in antiquity. It was an important tool in shaping civilizations and in education. Several thousand years after, the use of paper is no longer as widespread. There is a growing shift from paper products to digital materials on account of speed, conservation, and cost.

Unknown to many, paper and pulp also continues to grow and adapt to the changing times. In case you missed it, here are five of the latest and biggest developments in the paper industry.

Bacteria-immune paper

A North American firm called Sappi has been working on paper that retards the growth of bacteria. The application for this technology is countless and will undoubtedly prevent the spread of disease and illnesses in sanitary environments. The Sharklet paper will be helpful for hospitals, laboratories, and sterile areas.

As the name implies, this innovation banks on the studies that have been conducted on the skin of sharks. It has been discovered before that algae do not grow on the surface of a shark’s skin. If at all, the rate is absolutely slower. The Sharklet paper makes surfaces bacteria-resistant without the need for adding toxic chemicals or additives.

The paper has a diamond-shaped pattern and has tiny elements, no more than a tenth of the size of a human red blood cell.

Wi-Fi blocking wallpaper

Cyber hackers and identity thieves are able to hack online accounts, computers, and even mobile phones by piggybacking on the Wi-Fi network. French scientists have had enough of this problem and developed a wallpaper that secures your Wi-Fi signal. The product is called Metapaper and it filters electromagnetic waves depending on the setting. It lets mobile phone signals through while preventing the Wi-Fi network from being tapped.

This innovation not only works on privacy issues but more importantly internet security and safety of financial records.

Zika Test

The Zika virus is one of the most threatening viruses in the world today. It is a mosquito-borne disease that can cause severe birth defects to children if their mothers catch the virus while pregnant.  It is important to detect the presence of the Zika virus early. At Harvard University, a team of scientists has developed an ingenious Zika test that uses paper discs. These discs are embedded with freeze-dried synthetic gene circuits. The discs change color if the blood sample is positive for the virus.

This is a handy took since most of the affected persons live in far-flung areas or mountainous regions. The portable test could prevent loss of life and epidemics.

Cancer Detection Tool

The litmus test was invented long ago to check the PH balance of ingredients and substances. The medical and scientific field has grown by leaps and bounds since then. Nowadays, nanoparticles are used to detect a wide range of diseases, including cancer. The nanoparticles are injected into a patient to detect if a tumor is cancerous. The nanoparticles will exit when the person pees and the paper test will detect the presence of the biomarkers. This simple test eliminates the need for painful biopsies which include the use of long needles.

Fire-proof Pulp

Yes, it is possible. Pulp and paper are known to be flammable materials, but researchers in Finland have found a way to keep it from burning. VVT Technical Research Centre discovered that tiny cellulose fibers from wood pulp can be converted into flame-retardant coatings for buildings made of wood. The nanocellulose has 10x more solid content and is able to create an airtight barrier on the wood so oxygen does not reach the surface during a fire.

Of course, there is also the regular type of paper that most businesses need a Melbourne printing company for. If you need printing in the Melbourne CBD, bring your project to us. We look forward to helping you with your Melbourne printing projects.

These are just five new applications for paper and paper products in the modern age. It just goes to show that paper will be here to stay for thousands of years more.