What Is the Darkest Material in the World
Every surface reflects light, no matter how dark it appears. There is no such thing as absolute black. But now British scientists from the National Physical Laboratory have created a material that’s as close as it gets: Vantablack. The substance refl ects just 0.035% of visual light. In comparison, ordinary black paint generally reflects 5-10%. Thanks to its composition and structure, the thin layer of carbon nanotubes absorbs all but a fraction of visible light – which makes looking at this ultra-black coating a bit like staring into a black hole. Due to the lack of reflected light, it becomes impossible for the human eye to detect any shapes or contours formed from it. For all practical purposes, this makes Vantablack invisible. The scientists hope the ‘paint’ will be used in solar cells and telescopes as well as for military uses like stealth bombers.
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