Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Lightweight Stuff

Remember the world's lightest material, made of metal tubes?

It's been beaten out by 'aerographite', which is made of carbon, and is highly conductive - it might be really useful for making lighter batteries. And, like its predecessor, it can be compressed down to 90% and spring back.

I really like hearing about these developments. As a rider, I'm interested in the impact-absorbing properties these materials might have, resulting in safety helmets that don't have to be replaced if you have a wreck. (And I also keep hoping somebody will come up with a safety hat that perfectly mimics a western hat, because that's the only way we'll get the cowboys to protect their most valuable assets.)

Materials science is getting very, very exciting. Nanotechnology is no longer the future...it's with us.