German scientists at the Karisruhe Institute of Technology and researchers at Bayer MaterialScience have developed a wall treatment referred to as “seismic wallpaper” that is best suited for homes in earthquake-prone cities. The specially reinforced paper is called EQ-Top, and boasts the ability to hold masonry walls together and prevent them from breaking, falling or crumbling when subjected to a quake. The material consists of special stiff, high-strength glass fibers that are woven together in four different directions which allows the energy created by an earthquake to distribute evenly and prevent damage. To apply the wallpaper, a soft adhesive called Dispercoll (made out of water and polyurethane beads) is applied to the back of the paper and as the water dries, the beads stick the paper to the walls. This wallpaper was tested in a replica house in an earthquake stimulator and the house did not collapse. This is good news for the billion+ people who live in earthquake zones – more stability and less likelihood of collapsing walls can save many lives. The wallpaper is currently not available for purchase, but should be soon.