Imagine a material that shifts and moves according to the temperature of the outside air - like a flower opening up for sunlight and closing its petals at night. New high-tech smart materials have allowed this idea to thrive and the possibilities are endless. Originally posted on Design Curial, the designer and smart material guru Chris Leferti answers a few questions behind these mysterious materials. There are many materials that are defining the future: renewable resources, completely new materials such as graphene, but one of the biggest and most fascinating groups -- that continues to grow -- is smart materials. Find out more about these amazing materials after the break Ezio Manzini says in his book, The Material of Invention, trying to capture a snapshot of materials is like trying to take a group photograph where everyone is continually moving. This comparison relates to smart materials in two ways: firstly that it is a rapidly changing family, and secondly that many of the smart material families are in essence about change and motion. In this spellbinding family, metals and plastics can be bent, twisted and deformed, but when heat is applied will return to an original shape that has been pre-programmed during production.
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