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Liquid crystal fibres. Polarised light micrograph (PLM) of two extruded, liquid crystal (LC) polymer fibres. LC polymers are long, rod-like molecules which have a tendency to align in the same direction under certain conditions. When this happens the mechanical properties (especially strength) of the material are greatly enhanced in the direction of the alignment. This is especially true in extruded fibers. Extrusion is the process of forcing molten material through an aperture, to form a profile such as a fibre. LC fibre material is strong & lightweight and is especially useful for bullet proof clothing. Magnification: x12.5 at 35mm size.
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