Chinese researchers have developed a new type of biodegradable and biorecyclable glass, offering an eco-friendly alternative with a minimal environmental footprint.
Glass is widely used in various fields and is an indispensible part of our daily lives. However, the current use of commercial inorganic glasses and plastic glasses has led to ecological harm and social burden, as they are not biodegradable.
The researchers from the Institute of Process Engineering under the Chinese Academy of Sciences developed the biodegradable glass using biologically derived amino acids or peptides through the heating-quenching procedure.
The glass exhibits excellent glass-forming ability and optical properties, making it ideal for 3D-printing additive manufacturing and mold casting, according to the study published in the journal Science Advances.
The glass can be degraded and reused by microorganisms in compost. It can also be gradually degraded and absorbed after being implanted under the skin of a mouse.
The glass shows high biocompatibility, biodegradability, and biorecyclability compared with the currently used commercial glasses and plastic materials, according to the study.