Deep sea printers (Day 228)

Reef SquidSquid, plastic, printing and crude oil are words you don’t normally find in the same sentence, but in this case they are very apt.

Today’s story starts with the squid. Found across all over the world’s oceans, near the surface and at great depths, they are a source of protein and tall tales told by sailors through the ages.

Squid have ‘beaks’ which are made of one of nature’s toughest materials and ideal for catching and eating their prey.

Squid beaks are a mix of water, protein and a natural, plastic-like polymer called chitin. Chitin is the same stuff as in crab shells, scorpion stingers and beetle wings. It’s tougher than tooth enamel, but unlike teeth, it contains no minerals, just organic material.

Continue reading Deep sea printers (Day 228)