Fact of the Day: Stretching the rubber band’s life

rubber bands last longer when refrigerated

Did you know that the rubber bands last longer when refrigerated?

 

 

The natural rubber that is used to make rubber bands crystallizes over time, giving us what is commonly called “dry rot”, where the bands are “dry”, crumbly and no longer elastic. This process shows an unusual temperature dependence – it occurs fastest at room temperature. Putting the rubber bands in a cooler condition slows down that conversion as there is less energy inside the rubber to help it align itself for crystallization.

 

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