We've been impressed in the past by aerogel, a lattice-like solid that's almost entirely made of air but can support weight and also has tremendous insulating properties. Then last year an ultralight metal caught our eye, weighing in at 99.99 percent air, which leaves 0.01 percent solid.
Now we are excited to meet aerographite, a sponge grown of carbon nanotubes that's the least dense solid ever: a cubic centimeter of it weighs just two ten-thousandths of a gram.
Researchers at the University of Technology Sydney have created a new material that is lighter, less dense, harder, and stronger than steel. But this material isn’t one of those breakthroughs that only sounds good on paper. It is paper, and it could be a game-changer for materials science if it can live up to researchers’ hopes.
And the $64,000 question is ... does graphite conduct electricity? It certainly does! The video demonstration displays this quite convincingly. Graphite is an interesting material, an allotrope of carbon (as is diamond). It displays properties of both metals, and nonmetals. However, like a metal, graphite is a very good conductor of electricity due to the mobility of the electrons in its outer valence shells.
Seven new ways to get a state-of-the-art motorcycle experience
By Joe BrownPosted 08.16.2005 at 2:00 am 1 Comment
American motorcycles have a reputation for being low-tech machines stripped down for speed. But there´s only so much a bike can do without. So Confederate Motor Company (confederate.com) replaced every metal piece possible with a lightweight carbon-fiber one. The company hired industrial design firm Foraxis to help fabricate the new parts and produced a bike that weighs a mere 375 pounds: the B91 Wraith.