Skip to comments.World's Lightest Solid Takes Inspiration From Eiffel Tower
Posted on 11/18/2011 10:04:41 AM PST by edpc
A metallic lattice of hair-thin pipes is now the lightest solid yet created less dense than air, scientists revealed.
The strategy used to create these intricate structures could lead to revolutionary materials of extraordinary strength and lightness, including ones made of diamond, researchers added.
Ultra-lightweight materials such as foams are widely used in thermal insulation and to dampen sounds, vibrations and shocks. They can also serve as scaffolds for battery electrodes and catalytic systems.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Not really my field of expertise, but I thought it was cool, anyway.
Thanx ! A good story for once amidst a sea of Occupy nonsense.
Talk about “A picture is worth 1000 words.” Balanced on
a dandelion stem of nearly weightless seeds. WOW!
Now that is light material.
Less dense than air. Shouldn’t it be on the ceiling?
Engineering materials on a molecular level is going to create things with properties we can’t even imagine.
For one, I think superconductivity will prove to be ridiculously simple.
Yes, but if it’s actually lighter than air, it should be floating like a helium balloon.
But will Peeps also be safe on this material? :-)
The article didn't even explain this very well. I think they mean that the volume that the lattice takes up weighs less than a similar volume of air, but the material still weighs more than the air it displaces so it will still fall to the ground.
Of course I'm assuming this, and you know what happens when we assume........
I use “figured” instead of assume. Keeps me free from “assume” critics:)
I figured the same thing:)
Less dense than air. Shouldnt it be on the ceiling?
If you could seal it with infinitely lightweight foil, and suck down a vacuum without crushing it, it would float like a blimp.
It's not lighter than air, it's less dense than air. Big difference.
The researchers began with a liquid photopolymer a molecule that changes its properties when exposed to light. They shined patterns of ultraviolet light on this photopolymer, generating a three-dimensional lattice, and coated this structure with a thin film of metal in this case, nickel-phosphorous alloy.
Next, Schaedler and his colleagues etched away the photopolymer with lye, leaving behind a lattice of hollow nickel-phosphorus struts each 100- to 500-microns wide, or one-to-five times the width of a human hair. The walls of these tubes ranged from 100 to 500 nanometers or billionths of a meter thick, or up to 1,000 times thinner than a human hair.
These lattices are even airier than aerogels, with a density of 0.9 mg per cubic centimeter, “The lattice is 99.99 percent open volume,” Schaedler said. “It’s about 200 times lighter than Styrofoam.”
In experiments, these metal lattices proved very springy, bouncing back to their original shape even after being compressed to less than half their size.
Not for buoyancy purposes there's not. Density is mass per unit volume. If this stuff is less dense than air, it should be up on the ceiling.
I thought the world's lightest solid was Nancy Pelosi's brain.
How’d they manage to make it in the shape of a dandelion?
I pretty sure Peeps are safe.
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