Thursday, January 06, 2011

Have Scientists found a new state of matter?

According to an article in IO9, possibly. Lets explain.... After many years of research a team of scientists have developed what they are calling "equilibrium gel". Now when we think of a gel...what's the first thing that comes to mind....right, jello. Jello is an example of matter somewhat caught in an in between state. Not liquid, but certainly not a solid either. But even in it's quai-solid state, it is imperfect. Often leaving a certain amount liquid, and even under the best of times - it will return to a liquid state.

From the article:

  • The new equilibrium gel is different. It is formed (with) a synthetic clay called Laponite. Scientists suspended Laponite in water and, using x-rays, studied how it formed a gel. At concentrations of less than 1 percent, the Laponite mixture broke down after three years. At concentrations above 1 percent, the gel formed a stable structure.

No big deal huh? But being stable, it could be part of medication, batteries who know..!

An article in Science Now goes so far to suggest that this structure is indeed novel and new


Rosehippi said...

How stable? Stable enough to build cheap homes or cheaper cars or computer technology, space ships, satellite components or or clothes or sexy massage gel??? what kind of stable can a gel become??? Pretty empty article info wise...

Beam Me Up said...

Did you read the links? I hate just lifting cutting and pasting. Considering it's a meta-material the whole idea is not hardness, but the ability to maintain the "jelled" state. Oh but the images you brought to mind! Jello cars...hey even jello shots takes on a whole new meaning! :)