Comic characters and science fiction are a great way of spicing up science. Spiders' webs can also be used for work on Hooke's Law and the strength of materials. Much of this is in AS physics but I also see scope for research in biology: does the spider carry a ready store of silk or is it produced on demand, if so it must be done at an incredible speed. How does the spider's web differ from hair? How strong are the intermolecular forces that enable the spider to grip so well? Do we have a genetically engineered super glue ready to hand?

The quest to emulate the strength of spiders' silk is a lovely story for scientific enquiry. Often scientists are seen as striding forward developing new materials when here they are learning from the natural world.

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