British scientists have created a material which absorbs all but 0.035 per cent of light, a new world record, and is so dark the human eye struggles to discern what it is that it is seeing, giving the appearance of a black holeScientists are at it again with their endless discoveries.
This time around British researchers have created the 'new black' of the science world - and it is being dubbed super black.
The material is said to absorb all but 0.035 per cent of light, a new world record, and is so dark the human eye struggles to discern its shape and dimension, giving the appearance of a black hole.
Named Vantablack, or super black, it also conducts heat seven and half times more effectively than copper, and is ten times stronger than steel.
It is created by Surrey NanoSystems using carbon nanotubes, which are 10,000 thinner than human hair and so miniscule that light cannot get in but can pass into the gaps in between.
Most of the light is then absorbed as it bounces around, the Independent reports, creating the illusion of a black hole.
It has been grown on sheets of aluminium foil which can be seen in pictures released by the company. While the foil is crinkled and uneven, the surface covered by Vantablack appears completely smooth because of its light absorbing property.
The super black material has been developed for use in astronomical cameras, telescopes and infrared scanning systems and will be launched at the Farnborough International Airshow this week.
Named Vantablack, or super black, it also conducts heat seven and half times more effectively than copper, and is ten times stronger than steel
Ben Jensen, Chief Technology Officer of Surrey NanoSystems, said:
'Vantablack is a major breakthrough by UK industry in the application of nanotechnology to optical instrumentation.
'For example, it reduces stray-light, improving the ability of sensitive telescopes to see the faintest stars, and allows the use of smaller, lighter sources in space-borne black body calibration systems.
'Its ultra-low reflectance improves the sensitivity of terrestrial, space and air-borne instrumentation.'
Stephen Westland, professor of colour science and technology at Leeds University, told the paper: 'These new materials, they are pretty much as black as we can get, almost as close to a black hole as we could imagine.'
Vanta black may however not be very suitable for all types of clothing because of the heat it emits.