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Home  > Raw materials & technologies  > Technologies  > Nanotechnology  > CNT coating acts as “magic black cloth”

Thursday, 19 September 2019
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Raw materials & technologies, Technologies, Nanotechnology

CNT coating acts as “magic black cloth”

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

A carbon nanotube coating can conceal an object's three-dimensional geometry and make it look like a flat black sheet.

The new coating is based on carbon nanotubes

Source: Bayer MaterialScience

The new coating is based on carbon nanotubes

Source: Bayer MaterialScience

A carbon nanotube coating developed at the University of Michigan acts as a "magic black cloth" that conceals an object's three-dimensional geometry and makes it look like a flat black sheet. The 70-micron coating, or carbon nanotube carpet, is about half the thickness of a sheet of paper. It absorbs 99.9 percent of the light that hits it, researchers say.

Here is how the new coating works: Human eyes perceive an object based on how it reflects or scatters light. The "refractive index" of this new coating is similar to that of air, meaning light traveling through air doesn't scatter or reflect when it hits the coating. It is well known that carbon nanotubes are capable of absorbing light, but the researchers were able to push it to such a high percentage by spacing them just right.

The "perfect black" material created for this coating has a host of varied applications. It could possibly be used in display screens for ultra-high contrast and a crisper picture. It holds promise as solar heating device. The coating could inspire a new type of camouflaging paint for stealth aircraft.

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