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Gecko-inspired adhesive combines strong bond with damage-free, clean removal properties

The groundbreaking dry adhesive from Akron Ascent Innovations is based on biomimicry research studies conducted at the University of Akron.

Akron Ascent Innovations LLC (AAI), a high-tech startup in Akron, OH, has launched an innovative dry-adhesive technology that offers a combination of ease of use, strong adhesion and damage-free, clean removal not possible with conventional adhesives.

The groundbreaking dry-adhesive product, based on biomimicry research studies at the University of Akron, consists of millions of solid, sub-micron-diameter nanofibers that interact with microscopic surface contours for strong shear adhesion, but has nearly zero tackiness and low peel force, explained AAI. The first-generation product, called ShearGrip, eliminates the common difficulties and damaged surfaces that accompany the use of traditional adhesives.

ShearGrip dry adhesive products are available in customizable roll stock.

Dry adhesives are a new type of pressure-sensitive adhesive inspired by nature. Adhesion is based on the same principle as gecko feet, rather than relying on liquid-like adhesives or requiring chemical reactions to form a strong bond between two surfaces. Dry adhesives are produced by means of an electro-spinning process that is currently used widely in the filtration market but has never before been applied to adhesives. The ShearGrip dry adhesive platform makes use of unique directional adhesive characteristics. The initial commercial products will be offered in customizable roll stock with applications in development for a range of market segments, including consumer/industrial goods, film/labels, packaging, transportation and electronics.

AAI is launching ShearGrip products for use in both consumer and industrial applications. For consumer applications, the “pinless” products are now available for home and office applications, crafting, home décor and print photo markets. Shear Grip will also be available in the commercial print industry for use in signage and printable photo paper.

For the converter market, AAI has developed ShearGrip fiber-coated release films that can be used for a range of applications including temporary signage, wall hanging hooks, automotive assembly, food packaging, and smart clothing.

Gecko image courtesy mgkuijpers/Adobe Stock.

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