This is the finest fabric in the world and has been created by weaving individual molecule threads.

This is the finest fabric in the world and has been created by weaving individual molecule threads.

Today’s yarn weaving has already reached diameters of a few microns (wool, cotton, synthetic polymers, etc.), but scientists at the University of Manchester have gone further developing the finest weave in the world, surpassing the finest Egyptian linen. .

This has been possible thanks to the development of a way to weave molecular threads in two-dimensional layers .

10,000 times a human hair

To assimilate how fine this thread is, let’s think about the number of threads in a fabric per inch (about 2.5 centimeters). If Egyptian linen has about 1,500 threads, this new fabric reaches about 50 million .

Each layer of molecular tissue is only 4 nanometers thick; that’s 10,000 times thinner than a human hair . For the moment, yes. the largest piece of fabric manufactured is only 1mm long.


To develop this fabric, metal atoms and negatively charged ions were used to weave together tiny molecular building blocks made of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and sulfur atoms. The woven building blocks were eventually joined together like pieces of a jigsaw to form individual sheets of molecular strands woven into a fabric just 4 millionths of a millimeter thick (4 nanometers).

As David Leigh , lead author of this development, which has been published in a study in Nature, explains:

This is the first example of a molecularly woven layered fabric. Weaving molecular strands offers a new way to alter the properties of plastics and other materials. The number of strands and strand crossings was measured by bright X-rays on the building blocks. The strands bend the path of X-rays through the material by a specific amount, allowing the researchers to measure how many strands there are per inch. The measurement shows that the material has a thread count of 40-60 million threads per inch. By comparison, the finest Egyptian linen has a thread count of around 1,500.