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We studied the mechanical properties of dragline threads of the edible golden silk spider Nephila edulis that are produced under spinning speeds ranging from 0.1 to 400 mm s(-1) and temperatures ranging from 5 to 40 degrees C. These conditions affected the silk in all of the mechanical traits we tested (strain at breaking, breaking energy, initial Young's modulus and point of yielding). We argue that both trade-offs (between mechanical properties) and constraints (in the manufacturing process) have a large role in defining spider silk fibres.

Original publication




Journal article


Proc Biol Sci

Publication Date





2339 - 2346


Animals, Behavior, Animal, Female, Spiders, Temperature