Scientists have created a bathing suit that is made out of an incredible material capable of helping to clean the ocean.
The reusable material, dubbed the Sponge, is made from heated sucrose and repels water while absorbing contaminants, the University of California, Riverside reported.
"This is a super material that is not harmful to the environment and very cost effective to produce," said Mihri Ozkan, an electrical engineering professor at UC Riverside's Bourns College of Engineering.
The new design molds the Sponge material into the shape of a bikini and encapsulates it in a 3-D printed elastomer that can form to the body for a great fit. The material can absorb up to 25 times its own weight, and doesn't release the contaminants it has absorbed unless it is heated to a scorching 1,000 degrees Celsius. The contaminants are trapped in the inner pores of the sponge material, so they will not touch the wearers skin. Once the bathing suit has been worn several times, the absorbing pad can be replaced and recycled. The Sponge can be used up to 20 times before losing its absorbency.
The UC Riverside Office of Technology Commercialization has filed patents for these new inventions. The design won first place at the Reshape 15 Wearable Technology Competition and will be recognized at the Maker Faire in Rome on Oct. 16.