The toughest recorded spider egg case silks are woven into composites with tear-resistant architectures

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Parvez Alam, Danish Otieno, Matin Nuhamunada, Roselyn Anyango, Jared Odoyo, John Odhiambo, Kenneth Onyango
Publication year: 2016
Journal: Materials Science and Engineering: C
Volume number: 69
Start page: 195
End page: 199
eISSN: 1873-0191


In this communication, we report important preliminary evidence for possibly the toughest egg case silk threads recorded to date spun by the hermit spider, Nephilengys cruentata (View the MathML sourceG¯=193 MJm− 3). We further elucidate that the egg case itself is woven with a specialised repeat cross-weave that when subjected to tension, drives perpendicular-to-force threads to pile. This piling of threads constrains damage to small areas and retains the architectural integrity of the surrounding egg case material. We deduce that by having ultra-tough threads coupled to a tear resistant architecture, N. cruentata is able to protect its eggs from predators with a considerable level of effectiveness.

Last updated on 2019-10-12 at 02:45