It’s a carpet of carbon nanotubes that only reflects 0.045 percent light, making it, as the Houston Chronicle puts it, “100 times darker than a black-painted Corvette,” (which seems like a fairly imprecise measurement standard, but never mind). The previous darkest known material was a nickel and phosphorus alloy that reflected about 0.16 percent of light.
The material’s ability to absorb light could be beneficial to solar panels and, since it minimizes the scattering of light, it could also benefit telescope manufacturers.
It also minimizes the scattering of light, making it a potential boon to telescope manufacturers.
(And, yes, you’re absolutely right: I posted this just so I could use that headline. The photo was a bonus.)
(Image: Wikimedia Commons.)
[tags]physics, materials, light[/tags]