What new materials are there?

bobbymike

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Grey Havoc

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One of the latest attempts at an affordable and/or practical biodegradable plastic:
 

jsport

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Grey Havoc

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TomcatViP

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New promising Thermo electric material (sad to see in paper that extracting directly a voltage or current value per volume/surface of material and temperature is so difficult) :

 

Rhinocrates

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New promising Thermo electric material (sad to see in paper that extracting directly a voltage or current value per volume/surface of material and temperature is so difficult) :

More here:

“Thermoelectrics are essential in applications like the Mars Perseverance rover that require simpler, more lightweight and reliable designs instead of the bulky engines with moving parts that are traditionally used to generate electricity from heat,” said Delaire. “These magnesium-based materials are a big advance in the field that could offer significantly more power efficiency and a lot of potential for more advanced thermoelectric applications.”
 

HaveBlue77

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Long story short, at identical power densities, GaN on a diamond substrate offers 40% & 80% lower transistor temperatures, compared to silicon carbide and silicon respectively. If heating is not a concern, diamond could provide power densities up to three times higher than SiC. Performance gains from moving to diamond will be large.
 

TomcatViP

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Stemming the bleeding from a traumatic injury can save lives, but it’s hard to get adhesives to stick when blood is making everything wet. Now, MIT researchers have developed a new surgical glue that can halt bleeding within 30 seconds, inspired by the super-strong underwater adhesive used by barnacles.
 

Grey Havoc

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I have to say, I'm a bit sceptical here.
 

dannydale

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I have to say, I'm a bit sceptical here.
tl;dr They crushed Bucky's Balls. :p
 

starviking

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I have to say, I'm a bit sceptical here.
The skepticism should be directed at The Independent and Slashdot: total science fails the both of them. Here’s the abstract of the research paper. Note no mention of glass.

Abstract​

Carbon is one of the most fascinating elements due to its structurally diverse allotropic forms stemming from its bonding varieties (sp, sp2, and sp3). Exploring new forms of carbon has always been the eternal theme of scientific research. Herein, we report the amorphous (AM) carbon materials with high fraction of sp3 bonding recovered from compression of fullerene C60 under high pressure and high temperature previously unexplored. Analysis of photoluminescence and absorption spectra demonstrates that they are semiconducting with a bandgap range of 1.5–2.2 eV, comparable to that of widely used amorphous silicon. Comprehensive mechanical tests demonstrate that the synthesized AM-III carbon is the hardest and strongest amorphous material known so far, which can scratch diamond crystal and approach its strength. The produced AM carbon materials combine outstanding mechanical and electronic properties, and may potentially be used in photovoltaic applications that require ultrahigh strength and wear resistance.
 

dannydale

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Independent is no damn good as a source for science news, and I have no idea why BeauHD chose that to post on Slashdot.
 

Rhinocrates

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'Chainmail' that can be flexible or rigid on command. Caltech press release.


New Scientist (paywalled)


Nature (abstract, article paywalled)


Science Robotics article (also paywalled)


In Peter Watts' novel, Starfish, a character wears a deep sea diving suit made of an advanced chain mail that allows free movement, but resists pressure. This might be it.
 

Hobbes

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I have to say, I'm a bit sceptical here.
The skepticism should be directed at The Independent and Slashdot: total science fails the both of them. Here’s the abstract of the research paper. Note no mention of glass.

Abstract​

Carbon is one of the most fascinating elements due to its structurally diverse allotropic forms stemming from its bonding varieties (sp, sp2, and sp3). Exploring new forms of carbon has always been the eternal theme of scientific research. Herein, we report the amorphous (AM) carbon materials with high fraction of sp3 bonding recovered from compression of fullerene C60 under high pressure and high temperature previously unexplored. Analysis of photoluminescence and absorption spectra demonstrates that they are semiconducting with a bandgap range of 1.5–2.2 eV, comparable to that of widely used amorphous silicon. Comprehensive mechanical tests demonstrate that the synthesized AM-III carbon is the hardest and strongest amorphous material known so far, which can scratch diamond crystal and approach its strength. The produced AM carbon materials combine outstanding mechanical and electronic properties, and may potentially be used in photovoltaic applications that require ultrahigh strength and wear resistance.

'glass' is used in a broader sense here, they're referring to a solid that's amorphous rather than crystalline.

The problem with this material is in production: it's created in a diamond anvil cell (i.e. only a tiny amount can be created in one production cycle).
 

Rhinocrates

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Is there any indication of a Cost and weight per a given surface area?
Not that I'm aware of. At the moment I think it's proof-of-concept. I don't imagine that it would be light.

Different people but same labs created this stuff a few years ago:


With 3-D printing, characteristics can vary between layers, so I wonder if it would be possible make something that flexes when pushed from one side but jams when pushed from the other side? Keeping grit out would be solved by a fabric sheath and/or embedding it in a gel. In that case it would be flexible armour.

(Chainmail suits are used by divers studying sharks. It only stops the teeth penetrating, so you'd still get bruises from the bites.)

Tungsten has been proposed as a material for radiation shielding in space suits and as the older chainmail concept, it would supplement the biosuit Dava Newman was working on at MIT.


Weight would not be a problem in microgravity or on the Moon and Mars (abrasive dust would be, hence a sheath). In fact weight could help maintain muscle tone.

So, probably not cheap, expect applications in extreme environments - military, space, (Chernobyl?) in the medium term.
 

starviking

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'glass' is used in a broader sense here, they're referring to a solid that's amorphous rather than crystalline.

The problem with this material is in production: it's created in a diamond anvil cell (i.e. only a tiny amount can be created in one production cycle).
Generally archaic now, for the obvious reasons of scientific advances expanding the chances for confusion. Good point about production - materials like these will be more useful for investigating how the material properties come about, and how that can be applied to materials which are more productionizable
 

Rhinocrates

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Speaking of glass...


may have radii of curvatures of between 2 mm and 5 cm

The reasons why even the most aerodynamic road-legal cars today have comparatively flat front windshields are the practical issue of lamination and legislation dictating that they must not produce distortions - which curved glass will do. This will distort heavily at the creases but minimally on the flat panes. It will be interesting to see what legislation permits (the Cybertruck's metal corners have raised eyebrows over their potential violation of pedestrian safety legislation).

I could imagine applications to sensor windows, allowing the flat planes aiding stealth while reducing the complexity of frames and seals.
 

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Rhinocrates

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Some interesting stuff about biomimetics.

First I found this


Essentially, why not make a robot that moves in water like a lamprey?

Cool, I thought, then I found that


The link in the article is broken, so try this


The essence of that is that is that BAE sez, 'Ha! We're already thinking of that!'

If you want to go deeper (sorry)
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1oKnIZwujFs
and
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojlL03Z5yVQ

Fun fact: Mantas have the highest brain-to-body ratio of any fish and pass the so-called 'self-awareness test'- that is, if you put a mark on them and then present a mirror, they will show that they know that the mark is on themselves and not just a generic other. It's rather controversial since it's based on vision (dogs experience the world primarily through smell for example), but as an indicator, some but not all primates pass it, as do some corvids.
 
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Richard N

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Nature hasn't done propellers because it can't do rotating joints like a shaft in a bearing. The closest it does is a ball and socket that can move a shaft in a conical motion pivoting at the center of the ball. I've seen a microbe waving a stick in a conical motion, but nothing larger.

Penguin flippers do a pretty good job as nature's propellers. The Hobie Mirage Drive is a biomechanical design from the 2000s that has been used in thousands of their kayaks. It converts back and forth foot motions to power steel and rubber penguin flippers to drive a kayak replacing arms driving paddles. It uses the largest muscles in the body for propulsion instead of rendering the legs dead weight while the arms do the paddling. I have a 2013 model and cruising at 3 mph is about as much effort as cruising on a bicycle. Top speed is around 7 and new models are probably capable of a little more. I can leave any paddle kayaker in my wake.



View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UdWgC5ZpuU
 

GruntFox

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Here's a funny thing that is been happening: Battletech getting proven right via composite metal foams.

This acts quite similarly to how EndoSteel is fluffed to act, and it should be noted that the AP 12.7BMG round did worse than the ball round.

So, we're likely going to see a situation where you have Battletech style armor (which, oddly enough, infantry armor that can take a continuous wave laser pistol in the 100kJ (or, if you prefer, 20g of TNT) range to the chest plate and let the guy using the armor survive) coming around.
 

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