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Introduction to Man-made Materials

From time immemorial, mankind has been using many naturally available substances for various purposes. For example, cotton, silk and jute are used to manufacture fibres and clothes. Soapnuts are used for cleaning, and have anti-bacterial and antifungal properties. Other naturally available products include gum, resin, dyes, wood and so on, which are very useful to us. In olden days, when the population was limited, all the needs of human beings were met by naturally available substances. Currently, with increasing population, deforestation and the limited availability of natural materials, the need to develop alternative resources has grown. This need led to the development of an array of synthetic materials such as plastics, cement, glass, fibres, ceramics etc.

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