Monday, April 21, 2008

Paper Mache and Gluten

Mixed up some flour paste for a paper mache project I'm going to be working on this week. According to The Papier Mache Resource, it's the gluten in the flour that makes it sticky. The Exploratorium has an animation that shows how the protein molecules line up to form a gooey elastic mess. My batch developed a sticky skin that I skimmed off -- hopefully the remaining liquid is goopy enough!

Description of image, borrowed from ChemConnections:

Molecular model of the spiral structure formed by the HMW subunits of glutenin.

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