National Geographic

Living Polymers (Science Ink Sunday)

biopolymers

Matt Zielinski writes, “I recently learned that you collect images of science tattoos. Attached is a photo of a tattoo I recently had done. I wanted a biomechanical theme to the piece with a special focus on the material chemistry that could potentially be used if this piece of sci-fi comes to life. The tattoo starts on the left with simple atoms and molecules (water, NO3) and evolves into the organic chains. Those macromolecules are PEEK, PEI, and polysulfone, all of which are engineered polymers commonly used in the medical device industry today. They can also withstand incredibly high temperatures and are very strong materials. The ball-and-stick macromolecule is intended to be ADP to demonstrate a synthesis of engineered and natural chemistry in the final product, the half-machine, half-woman face at the top right.

“I am a chemical engineer by education who works in the specialty polymer industry. A lot of the projects I work on were the inspiration for this tattoo and I believe that the technology to produce the biomechanical woman is not so far fetched as many would think.”

You can see the rest of the Science Tattoo Emporium here or in my book, Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed.

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