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MIT Unveils New Material That’s Strongest and Lightest On Earth

  • Researchers from MIT have created a new material that is actually stronger than graphene – making it 10 times stronger than steel, with only five percent of its density.
  • The research has many applications, according to experts, including ones in the fields of architecture, construction, and even filtration.

STRONG AND POROUS

For years, researchers have known that carbon, when arranged in a certain way, can be very strong. Case in point: graphene.

Graphene, which was heretofore, the strongest material known to man, is made from an extremely thin sheet of carbon atoms arranged in two dimensions. But there’s one drawback: while notable for its thinness and unique electrical properties, it’s very difficult to create useful, three-dimensional materials out of graphene.

Now, a team of MIT researchers discovered that taking small flakes of graphene and fusing them following a mesh-like structure not only retains the material’s strength, but the graphene also remains porous. Based on experiments conducted on 3D printed models, researchers have determined that this new material, with its distinct geometry, is actually stronger than graphene – making it 10 times stronger than steel, with only five percent of its density.

FUTURE APPLICATIONS

The discovery of a material that is extremely strong but exceptionally lightweight will have numerous applications. As MIT reports:

The new findings show that the crucial aspect of the new 3-D forms has more to do with their unusual geometrical configuration than with the material itself, which suggests that similar strong, lightweight materials could be made from a variety of materials by creating similar geometric features.

Simulation results of compression (top left and i) and tensile (bottom left and ii) tests on 3-D graphene. Image Credit: Zhao Qin

“You could either use the real graphene material or use the geometry we discovered with other materials, like polymers or metals,” says Markus Buehler, the head of MIT’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) and the McAfee Professor of Engineering. “You can replace the material itself with anything. The geometry is the dominant factor. It’s something that has the potential to transfer to many things.”

Large scale structural projects, such as bridges, can follow the geometry to ensure that the structure is strong and sound. Construction may prove to be easier, given that the material used will now be significantly lighter. Because of its porous nature, it may also be applied to filtration systems.

This work, says Huajian Gao, a professor of engineering at Brown University, who was not involved in this work, “shows a promising direction of bringing the strength of 2-D materials and the power of material architecture design together.”

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Current Affairs

Mass Scale Governmental Digitization launched by the Government

In 4,775 state-owned secondary schools, approximately 75 % of Kerala’s 45,000 classrooms have been made high-tech with projectors,laptops, speakers and numerous equipment. Along with the academic year beginning in June,suit will be followed by the rest of the schools.

As a part of the government’s Public Education Rejuvenation Mission the initiative is taken and is being implemented by govt. ltd. Kerala Infrastructure and Technology for Education (KITE).

“34,500 classrooms already provided with laptops, projectors, projector ceiling mounting kits, USB speakers and screens in addition to high-speed broadband internet connectivity”, said KITE Vice Chairman K. Anvar Sadath.

One lakh teachers has been started to receive training for handling the various equipment.

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Film News

Farhan Akhtar finally puts an end to the rumours about Don 3

New Delhi: The third instalment of 2006’s ‘Don’ starring Shah Rukh Khan, has been making rounds for the speculations on its star cast. The Farhan Akhtar‘s directorial was a remake of 1978’s ‘Don’, featuring Amitabh Bachchan in the lead role.

Several media reports stated that Farhan himself will act in the film and essay the role of a cop. However, earlier today, Farhan has put an end to the speculations.

The ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’ actor tweeted, “Request those who conjure up news about #Don3 without any fact checking to please refrain”. Furthermore, he urged those people to not mislead the fans of the franchise and wrote, “It is not fair to raise expectations of the film’s fanbase via false news”.

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Current Affairs

12-year-old kerala Boy becomes India’s ‘youngest father’

A 12-year-old boy from Kerala became the youngest dad in India after he fathered a child with a 16-year-old.

The young mother gave birth to a baby girl a few months ago at a hospital in Ernakulam.

The children belong to Kochi, about 200 km from Kerala’s capital Thiruvananthapuram.

Police said tests confirmed that he is the father of the two-month-old baby girl. The young mother is the boy’s first cousin and were neighbours.

NDTV said on Friday, adding that paternity tests showed the eight standard student could be India’s youngest dad.

The Hindu also reported that DNA tests have confirmed that the boy is indeed the biological father of the child.

Doctors believe that the boy could have a medical condition called “precocious puberty” which made him attain puberty at an earlier age which is why he is being believed to be the youngest father in India.

The girl had alleged that she had been raped by the boy following which a case has been registered against him, they said. However, when questioned, the boy blamed the girl for the relationship and hence a case has been registered against the young mother.

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