With the new gadgets being manufactured every day, we are going through the phase when actual digital innovation and new tech developments are deciding the fundamental condition of human life. The new Lighter-Than-Air material can drastically change human life and technology which coincides around us.
German Scientists have developed a sturdy material called Aerographite made mostly of air, opening up huge implications for the future development of electronics.
Aerographite is a black freestanding material that can be produced in various shapes occupying a volume of up to several cubic centimeters. It consists of a seamless interconnected network of carbon tubes that have micron-scale diameters and a wall thickness of about 15 nm. Because of the relatively lower curvature and larger wall thickness, these walls differ from the graphene-like shells of carbon nanotubes and resemble vitreous carbon in their properties. These walls are often discontinuous and contain wrinkled areas that improve the elastic properties of aerographite.
The material is lightweight and electrically conductive which is beneficial for the development of the future innovative gadgets and lifestyle tools. Scientists believe that the material can be effectively used in the future as lightweight batteries, which could be used in green transportation such as electronic cars and e-bikes in the future -- leading to the yet another possbilities to further decrease the size and wieght of the gadgets which we use today.
It weighs in at 0.2 milligrams for each cubic centimeter, making it the lightest material in the world. It's lighter than a nickel material that was presented to the public about six months ago.
The news comes as researchers last year at the University of California Irvine developed a material as strong as metal while 100 times lighter than Styrofoam.
"Our work is causing great discussions in the scientific community. Aerographite weights four times less than world-record-holder up to now," Matthias Mecklenburg, co-author and Ph.D. student at the TUHH, said on Kiel University's website.
"It is able to be compressed up to 95% and be pulled back to its original form without any damage," said Professor Rainer Adelung of Kiel University. "Up to a certain point, the Aerographite will become even more solid and therefore stronger than before. Also, the newly constructed material absorbs light rays almost completely. One could say it creates the blackest black."
The structure of the material is engineerily designed and has been scientifically optimised to sterngthen the abbility to compress the material to the great extent. Made by developing a linked carbon nanotubes onto a zinc-oxide template, it is extermely reilient.
Aerographite electrodes have been tested in an electric double-layer capacitor (EDLC, also known as supercapacitor) and endured the mechanical shocks related to loading-unloading cycles and crystallization of the electrolyte (that occurs upon evaporation of the solvent). Their power capacity of 1.25 Wh/kg is comparable to that of carbon nanotube electrodes (~2.3 Wh/kg).
Aerogel was the worlds lightest material which was 1 milligram per cubic centimeter before aerographite came into existense. We did posted about aerogel back in 2011. The new discovery suggests that the world is something we cannot predict.