based in europe’s most heavily forested country and interested in the future use of cellulose, finnish aalto university has introduced the CHEMARTS cookbook, a project that offers both simple and advanced recipes for hands-on experiments with wood-based materials. combining design methods and chemical engineering, the CHEMARTS team aims to inspire people to test the recipes at home, in workshops or in chemistry labs and develop their own ideas.
recipe 14: bio slime, by chiao-wen hsu & yu chen
all images by eeva suorlahti
the cookbook by aalto university asks questions including: how can we make flexible, transparent wood-based materials? what kinds of materials can we derive from trees, while still respecting the preciousness of nature? could the innovative use of renewable cellulosic materials change our material world? the book showcases experimental ideas and interesting results, focusing on raw materials that are processed either chemically or mechanically from trees or other plants: cellulose fibres, micro- or nano-structured fibrils, cellulose derivatives, lignin, bark, and wood extractives.
recipe 20: patterning cellulose, by iines jakolev
as a long-term strategic collaboration between two aalto university faculties (chemistry and arts), CHEMARTS strives for a circular economy in which materials are not only reused or recycled — they are merely stored in products and then used again and again. when designers and scientists join forces already at the early stage of materials research, new plant-based materials can be designed and developed for these closed-loop systems.
recipe 4: common reed oanels, by paivi lehtinen
the CHEMARTS cookbook foam experiments at aalto university
recipe 2: pine bark reinvented, by aarni tujula
recipe 9: pulp foams
recipe 11: solid foam, by tapani vuorinen & tomi jeskanen
the CHEMARTS cookbook team (clockwise) tapani vuorinen, nina riutta, eeva Suorlahti, pirjo kääriäinen & liisa tervinen
aalto university’s the CHEMARTS cookbook inspires material enthusiasts