Scientists have managed to develop a method for making the world’s sharpest knives, which are made not of steel or ceramic, but of wood.
Thanks to a new method, researchers at the University of Maryland in the United States have succeeded in making wood 23 times stronger than usual. At the same time, a knife created from such a tree turned out to be 3 times sharper than a conventional stainless steel dining knife. “The knife can easily cut a medium-rare steak just like a dinner knife,” the scientists note. After using a wooden knife, it can be washed very easily, as is usually the case with dirty dishes. Then such a knife can be used again. It is noted that in a similar way, you can also make wooden nails, which will be as sharp as steel, but even more durable.
Scientists have discovered their new way of hardening and processing wood to make it 23 times stronger. The senior author of the new study, Teng Li, says they have begun treating wood in such a way as to remove the less hard components from it, which are hemicellulose and lignin, without breaking down the cellulose, which, on the contrary, has a higher strength-to-density ratio. than most materials. Moreover, if you remove lignin from the wood, it will become very soft and flexible. After that, the wood is passed under a hot press. Once the material has been fully processed, it can be shaped to the desired shape and then coated with mineral oil to extend its lifespan. It is noted that such a coating allows the wood knife to maintain its sharpness even after washing, given that cellulose tends to absorb water.
The researchers note that their way of hardening wood could potentially become the most energy efficient and with much less impact on the environment. The wooden knives themselves can be sharpened just like ordinary ones.