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Spider capture silk is a biomaterial with both high strength and high elasticity, but the structural design principle underlying these remarkable properties is still unknown. It was revealed recently by atomic force microscopy that, an exponential force--extension relationship holds both for capture silk mesostructures and for intact capture silk fibers [N. Becker et al., Nature Materials 2, 278 (2003)]. In this Letter a simple hierarchical chain model was proposed to understand and reproducedoi:10.1103/physrevlett.94.028104 pmid:15698235 fatcat:gk7pgawlhze6zpxv3z3py5hz5a