The plastic, known as Synthetic Gecko, has been developed by researchers at aerospace and defence firm BAE Systems. Like the reptile’s foot, the polymer is covered in millions of tiny mushroom-like hairs that provide grip.
Future applications could include an adhesive to repair aircraft, skin grafts or even a Spiderman-style suit.
“It would mean that your local window cleaner could dispense with his ladders and climb up the side of your house,” says Dr Sajad Haq a principle research scientist at the company’s Advanced Technology Centre in Filton, Bristol. “There’s a whole host of applications. It’s just a question of your imagination…”
(Anyone remember “Fractite,” I think it was, from the 90s?)