Akron Ascent Innovations is the first company to use electrospinning to produce dry adhesives, which offers the potential for solvent-free, environmentally friendly adhesives that have a remarkable combination of strength and clean, damage-free removability not possible with conventional adhesive technologies.
Dry adhesion has been a topic of significant academic and industrial interest since the early 2000’s, and a number of different approaches have been explored to create commercial products. Despite an immense effort and a number of extremely impressive academic reports, little progress has been made outside of laboratories due to challenges in the scalability of the approaches. One of the major value propositions of AAI’s approach is the use of a manufacturing approach that is already well known and established: electrospinning. Although it may not be quite a household word yet, electrospinning has a remarkable and rich history dating to pre-industrial times.
The first reports on the influence of an electrical charge on a liquid date back to the turn of the 17th century. At the time, scientists followed the Aristotelian approach and musing about phenomena without any real urge to verify. William Gilbert was among a new generation of natural philosophers that rejected this Aristotelian approach and instead performed experiments to test prevailing views.