Science & Technology

MIT researchers synthesise the blackest material on planet

The new substance is made from carbon nanotubes and the MIT researchers said it can absorb 99.996% of light

 
Last Updated: Monday 16 September 2019

How black is black anyway? It seems that Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has set a new record for the blackest material till date. This new substance is "10 times blacker than anything that has previously been reported," claimed the institute in a press release.

The new substance is made from carbon nanotubes and the MIT researchers said it can absorb 99.996% of light. Carbon nanotubes are tiny, smaller than hair strands of carbon that can be weaved together and engineered into a lot of products including space applications.

“Our material is 10 times blacker than anything ever been reported, but I think the blackest black is a constantly moving target," said Brian Wardle, professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT.

The previous record was held by a substance called Vantablack, which was synthesised in 2014.

The team's aim was not to create the blackest material but to find an efficient way to create nanotubes. But they accidentally stumbled upon it. The findings of this research have been published in the journal ACS-Applied Materials and Interfaces.

The new material has been placed in a special exhibition called Redemption of Vanity, at the New York Stock Exchange. In this exhibition, the super dark properties of the new material have been used to hide the sparkle of a 16.78-carat diamond worth $2 million.

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