Friday, April 24, 2009

Once You Go Black...

Japanese scientists have created the blackest material ever out of (what else?) carbon nanotubes. Seems like carbon nanotubes are the stuff awesome will be made of, as they've been floated as the solution for everything from sticky Spider-Man gloves to space elevator ribbon. These particular nanotubes absorb between 97 and 99% of all known wavelengths of light. By comparison, the blackest paint you can buy absorb between 84 and 95% of light. This means that the nanotube material appears perfectly flat, like a deep hole in the surface of whatever they lie upon. The practical applications? Well, for starters, this material could be used as a more efficient coating for solar cells, especially those designed to gather light power from the darkness of deep space. Also, it's a great material for slapping on canyon walls when you're being chased by Wile E. Coyote. More details here.

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