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Buckypaper — Out of the Lab, Into the Market

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the now-roll-it-into-a-ball-to-blow-my-mind dept.

Technology 125

doomsdaywire writes "Buckypaper isn't exactly news to anyone here. However, this article quotes Ben Wang, director of Florida State's High-Performance Materials Institute, saying, 'Our plan is perhaps in the next 12 months we'll begin maybe to have some commercial products.' The article continues: '"If this thing goes into production, this very well could be a very, very game-changing or revolutionary technology to the aerospace business," said Les Kramer, chief technologist for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, which is helping fund the Florida State research. ... The long-range goal is to build planes, automobiles and other things with buckypaper composites. The military also is looking at it for use in armor plating and stealth technology.'"

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125 comments

lowest form of joke (-1, Offtopic)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418545)

Nobody reads /. for the news. Most posts are at least two weeks old or repeats. :-D

Re:lowest form of joke (1)

Windows_NT (1353809) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418565)

news, read? /. ???
WTF is buckypaper?

lowest form of paper. (4, Informative)

Ostracus (1354233) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418689)

Re:lowest form of paper. (2, Funny)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419429)

From that link:

"These guys have actually demonstrated materials that are capable of being used on flying systems," said Adams, director of Rice's Richard E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology. "Having something that you can hold in your hand is an accomplishment in nanotechnology."

I don't know about that, I'd say they're doing nanotechnology wrong if you can hold it in your hand and see it.

Re:lowest form of paper. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419605)

moran!

Ultimate toilet paper... (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419659)

Bucky paper cleans like no other and leaves a starfish you could eat your dinner off.

Seriously, is there anything carbon nanotubes can't do?

Re:lowest form of joke (5, Informative)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419285)

potential applications of buckypaper listed on Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

  • If exposed to an electric charge, buckypaper could be used to illuminate computer and television screens. It could be more energy-efficient, lighter, and could allow for a more uniform level of brightness than current cathode ray tube (CRT) and liquid crystal display (LCD) technology.
  • Since carbon nanotubes are one of the most thermally conductive materials known, buckypaper lends itself to the development of heat sinks that would allow computers and other electronic equipment to disperse heat more efficiently than is currently possible. This, in turn, could lead to even greater advances in electronic miniaturization.
  • Because carbon nanotubes have an unusually high current-carrying capacity, a buckypaper film could be applied to the exteriors of airplanes. Lightning strikes then could flow around the plane and dissipate without causing damage.
  • Films also could protect electronic circuits and devices within airplanes from electromagnetic interference, which can damage equipment and alter settings. Similarly, such films could allow military aircraft to shield their electromagnetic "signatures", which can be detected via radar.
  • Buckypaper could act as a filter membrane to trap microparticles in air or fluid. Because the nanotubes in buckypaper are insoluble and can be functionalized with a variety of functional groups, they can selectively remove compounds or can act as a sensor.
  • Produced in high enough quantities and at an economically viable price, buckypaper composites could serve as an effective armor plating.
  • Buckypaper can be used to grow biological tissue, such as nerve cells. Buckypaper can be electrified or functionalized to encourage growth of specific types of cells.
  • The Poisson's ratio for carbon nanotube buckypaper can be controlled and has exhibited auxetic behaviour, capable of use as artificial muscles.

seems to me it would be easier to produce buckypaper in the quantities required for use as a new type of electronic display or chemical filter than it would be to build an entire plane out of it.

Interesting Caveats (3, Funny)

dontmakemethink (1186169) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420481)

There is an unusual set of warnings being distributed with Buckypaper [jt.org]:

Caution: Buckypaper may suddenly accelerate to dangerous speeds.

Buckypaper contains a liquid core, which, if exposed due to rupture, should not be touched, inhaled, or looked at.

Do not use Buckypaper on concrete.

Discontinue use of Buckypaper if any of the following occurs:

  • itching
  • vertigo
  • dizziness
  • tingling in extremities
  • loss of balance or coordination
  • slurred speech
  • temporary blindness
  • profuse sweating
  • or heart palpitations

If Buckypaper begins to smoke, get away immediately. Seek shelter and cover head.

Buckypaper may stick to certain types of skin.

When not in use, Buckypaper should be returned to its special container and kept under refrigeration. Failure to do so relieves the makers of Buckypaper, Wacky Products Incorporated, and its namesake, Buckminster Fuller, of any and all liability.

Ingredients of Buckypaper include an unknown glowing green substance which fell to Earth, presumably from outer space.

Buckypaper has been shipped to our troops in Saudi Arabia and is being dropped by our warplanes on Iraq.

Do not taunt Buckypaper.

Re:Interesting Caveats (1)

mabhatter654 (561290) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421885)

seriously, I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that this will have long term affects similar to asbestos. It's not the chemical that's the problem but the super small, non-destructible particles that damage the fine internal tissues. They already had this problem using buckeyballs to deliver meds. I'd expect the raw fibers during processing will need to be tightly controlled. Wrapped up in epoxy it will be fine for normal use as long as it doesn't break... but if airplane wings break the passengers have bigger problems.

Aw, come on... (0)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422191)

Been done, dude. You completely ripped off the "Happy Fun Ball" bit from TV. That's called "plagiarism".

While I appreciate the humor, I got the impression you were trying to pass it off as your own. Shame.

woohoo! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25418553)

A couple weeks ago, while browsing around the library downtown, I had to take a piss. As I entered the john, Barack Obama -- the messiah himself -- came out of one of the booths. I stood at the urinal looking at him out of the corner of my eye as he washed his hands. He didn't once look at me. He was busy and in any case I was sure the secret service wouldn't even let me shake his hand.

As soon as he left I darted into the booth he'd vacated, hoping there might be a lingering smell of shit and even a seat still warm from his sturdy ass. I found not only the smell but the shit itself. He'd forgotten to flush. And what a treasure he had left behind. Three or four beautiful specimens floated in the bowl. It apparently had been a fairly dry, constipated shit, for all were fat, stiff, and ruggedly textured. The real prize was a great feast of turd -- a nine inch gastrointestinal triumph as thick as his cock -- or at least as I imagined it!

I knelt before the bowl, inhaling the rich brown fragrance and wondered if I should obey the impulse building up inside me. I'd always been a liberal democrat and had been on the Obama train since last year. Of course I'd had fantasies of meeting him, sucking his cock and balls, not to mention sucking his asshole clean, but I never imagined I would have the chance. Now, here I was, confronted with the most beautiful five-pound turd I'd ever feasted my eyes on, a sausage fit to star in any fantasy and one I knew to have been hatched from the asshole of Barack Obama, the chosen one.

Why not? I plucked it from the bowl, holding it with both hands to keep it from breaking. I lifted it to my nose. It smelled like rich, ripe limburger (horrid, but thrilling), yet had the consistency of cheddar. What is cheese anyway but milk turning to shit without the benefit of a digestive tract?

I gave it a lick and found that it tasted better then it smelled.

I hesitated no longer. I shoved the fucking thing as far into my mouth as I could get it and sucked on it like a big half nigger cock, beating my meat like a madman. I wanted to completely engulf it and bit off a large chunk, flooding my mouth with the intense, bittersweet flavor. To my delight I found that while the water in the bowl had chilled the outside of the turd, it was still warm inside. As I chewed I discovered that it was filled with hard little bits of something I soon identified as peanuts. He hadn't chewed them carefully and they'd passed through his body virtually unchanged. I ate it greedily, sending lump after peanutty lump sliding scratchily down my throat. My only regret was that Barack Obama wasn't there to see my loyalty and wash it down with his piss.

I soon reached a terrific climax. I caught my cum in the cupped palm of my hand and drank it down. Believe me, there is no more delightful combination of flavors than the hot sweetness of cum with the rich bitterness of shit. It's even better than listening to an Obama speech!

Afterwards I was sorry that I hadn't made it last longer. But then I realized that I still had a lot of fun in store for me. There was still a clutch of virile turds left in the bowl. I tenderly fished them out, rolled them into my handkerchief, and stashed them in my briefcase. In the week to come I found all kinds of ways to eat the shit without bolting it right down. Once eaten it's gone forever unless you want to filch it third hand out of your own asshole. Not an unreasonable recourse in moments of desperation or simple boredom.

I stored the turds in the refrigerator when I was not using them but within a week they were all gone. The last one I held in my mouth without chewing, letting it slowly dissolve. I had liquid shit trickling down my throat for nearly four hours. I must have had six orgasms in the process.

I often think of Barack Obama dropping solid gold out of his sweet, pink asshole every day, never knowing what joy it could, and at least once did, bring to a grateful democrat.

The problem is ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25418583)

The President has been in strict opposition to the use of buckypaper in aerospace applications, especially in the construction of the next Air Force 1. He noted "the buck stops here."

Re:The problem is ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419121)

Too bad he won't be president for much longer.

Re:The problem is ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419253)

We still have enough time for a Constitutional amendment to make him President-for-life! Who's with me?

Re:The problem is ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419391)

Too bad he won't be president for much longer.

You are magnificently retarded. Have you figured out why yet?

maybe (4, Funny)

cheebie (459397) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418605)

My plan is perhaps in the next 12 months I'll begin maybe to believe this is something more than vaporware.

Re:maybe (0)

MRe_nl (306212) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418887)

See also this sentence from TFA
"important progress that may soon turn hype into reality."
Still, good stuff.
Homer:"Hmmm, buckypaper..."

Oh wonderful (0, Flamebait)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418695)

Nanotech. A whole new zoo of materials, significantly different in their properties from the same stuff in macro form, but that isn't in itself regulated.

This could turn into another DDT

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419011)

Fire wasn't regulated either, at it could burn down whole forests!

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419111)

Fire wasn't regulated either, at it could burn down whole forests!

"Fire engulfed the forest, boiled into the night, then neatly put itself out, as all unscheduled fires over a certain size are now required to do by law." -- Douglas Adams, "Mostly Harmless", Chapter 11.

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Interesting)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419351)

actually fire is regulated in a lot of places. i just recently got back from Yosemite and they have strict regulations in the park about where you can or can't start fires.

you can't just start fires anywhere you want. arson is still a crime AFAIK.

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419519)

While it is true that it is illegal to set other people's property on fire without their permission, I don't need a license to light up my barbecue, turn on my furnace, or use my acetylene torch (and the latter, correctly adjusted, can generate quite a few buckyballs and nanotubes).

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419869)

there are different types/degrees of regulation. you don't need a license to drink a beer, but you do need a license to dispense it in a commercial establishment.

likewise, you don't need a license to sell or produce food products, but they're still regulated by the FDA. i think the OP voices some legitimate concerns. just look at the condition of food and drug safety before the FDA was formed. and it is possible for ordinarily safe chemicals to become hazardous to one's health if manufactured in the nano scale.

it's no reason to ban all nanotechnology, but perhaps the government needs to initiate some research into the safety of nanomaterials.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

ElectricRook (264648) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420917)

I don't need a license to light up my barbecue, turn on my furnace
 

I see you either:

A- Don't live in California.

B- Don't follow the letter of the law too closely.

Re:Oh wonderful (4, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419045)

Terrible, isn't it? People doing things without permission! Unregulated activity! We must bring this irresponsible "scientific research" under government control! After all, we know that government can be trusted to never do anything irresponsible such as, oh, I don't know, maybe spraying crowds of people with poison gas or setting off nuclear explosives in the atmosphere? And no government would ever enslave large numbers of young men and send them off to try to kill young men similarly enslaved by another government. No. Let's have government control everything. We know we can trust them, after all. Just look at history.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Jack9 (11421) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419227)

Success is not defined by possibilities but by acceptable consequences. I see no consequences (like what happens when you aspirate bits of charred buckypaper) and therefore I say those developing are irresponsible. Lots of that going around.

Re:Oh wonderful (3, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419441)

So we should all just squat in the mud until the sun goes out, living in grass huts and eating windfalls (but only in the manner of our grandfathers: Don't you dare do anything new.)

If you believe that carbon nanotubes are dangerous get some (they are available for sale) and demonstrate their hazardous nature in controlled experiments. BTW buckyballs and carbon nanotubes occur naturally in soot. You might want to look into outlawing fire.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Jack9 (11421) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419515)

Whatever that means. You're not even talking about the same thing.

What's worse you advocate (the equivalent of) Joe Schmo trying to prove that a wooden heart valve can be made to be as durable as a porcine by conducting his own experiments on dogs or that it's adviseable for him to try to show that cyanide can make a perfectly acceptable fuel source by building test engines and driving around the neighborhood? Just wow.

One of he tenants of modern science is considering consequences instead of embracing every seeming discovery as immediately applicable as a solution. You might want to get out of the mud.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420915)

One of he tenants of modern science is considering consequences instead of embracing every seeming discovery as immediately applicable as a solution. You might want to get out of the mud.

No. Science is not very effective at considering consequences. A market based approach is far superior.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Jack9 (11421) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422475)

If you think modern science isn't highly politicized based on intended audience, you aren't keeping up with civilization (since the greeks at the least).

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Insightful)

ElectricRook (264648) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421041)

One of he tenants of modern science is considering consequences instead of embracing every seeming discovery as immediately applicable as a solution.

No... Considering the consequences is _not_ part of the scientific method.

While considering the consequences is a vital step. Consequences falls under the category of value judgments, and are part of the political method.

It is vital that politics be kept out of the scientific method. If we allow the scientific method to be polluted by politics, Science will not be able to help us solve problems. Look at what happened to Mr Galileo Galilei in the era when politics controlled science.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Jack9 (11421) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422097)

Yes. Considering the consequences _is_ part of modern science. How is the scientific method relevant to the consideration of promoting a scientific discovery (as safe or useful) in context? Just promoting the benefits without giving any caveats is simply irresponsible and wrong.

Re:Oh wonderful (3, Funny)

MadUndergrad (950779) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422201)

One of he tenants of modern science is considering consequences instead of embracing every seeming discovery as immediately applicable as a solution. You might want to get out of the mud.

One of the tenants of modern science is a real dick. Not only has he failed to pay his rent on time once this year, but he doesn't do jack shit to keep the place clean. It's a filthy mess. Modern science should just evict his ass.

Re:Oh wonderful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419601)

So we should all just squat in the mud until the sun goes out, living in grass huts and eating windfalls (but only in the manner of our grandfathers: Don't you dare do anything new.)

Straw man arguments are lies.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

hurfy (735314) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419883)

"BTW buckyballs and carbon nanotubes occur naturally in soot. You might want to look into outlawing fire."

Too late

You can't generally use a wood burning stove at many times of the year here because of the ..umm... particulates emitted !?!

((hmm, time to update Firefox dictionary. It has buckboards but not buckyballs,lol))

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

zoney_ie (740061) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419541)

That's an argument for regulation of the government too... as indeed many sane countries do.

Lack of regulation is just anarchy. People only like it when they feel they can make the most of it and "win" at the expense of others.

DDT is not the evil it was portrayed to be. (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422145)

Given more modern research and research methods, some governments are considering re-approving the use of DDT. Responsibly used (which it was not in the past), it could be very beneficial to the overall environment.

Re:Oh wonderful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419215)

As long as you have them in compounds of macro size, all is well. All their properties will be very similar to "normal" macro-sized material, or let's say, adhere to laws observed in macros-sized particles.
But if individual particles are smaller than dust particles, they might kill you.
Do nasty stuff inside your lungs, cause incendiary reactions, etc.

Captcha: portions.
lol.

Re:Oh wonderful (5, Informative)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419235)

Actually it may be that we've learned our lesson. Even though nanotechnology is still a very nascent field, serious efforts are already underway to measure the health effects and safety concerns for these kinds of materials. For instance, in the United States, NIOSH (a branch of the CDC tasked with evaluating work-related risks) has an effort underway to quantify the effects of nano-materials on people (link [cdc.gov]). There are similar efforts worldwide for this "NanoEHS" issue (e.g. this [nanoehsalliance.org]).

Only time will tell, of course. But as someone working in the broad field of "nano", I can say that health, safety, and environmental impact are already a part of our research plans. There are considerable efforts to make sure we understand the impact of these materials before sending them to market. Also, since we are the ones working with these materials daily, we are certainly concerned with any possible toxicity.

Mistakes may still be made (e.g. a product released ends up having an unforeseen interaction with some other material/drug/etc.), but presently it seems that agencies are being appropriately proactive in terms of assessing risk before commercialization is even a serious consideration.

Re:Oh wonderful (-1, Flamebait)

SalsaDoom (14830) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419319)

Oh, nice example. If fear mongering hippies hadn't got DDT banned many lives would have been saved from insect borne diseases. DDT is not dangerous except in very, very high concentrations. A quick google for DDT fearing mongering will give you lots of examples.

Seriously, are you honestly suggesting that nanotech and carbon nanotubes be stopped because of some completely made up dangers? Even if the substance turns out to be dangerous in certain circumstances, its still going to revolutionize many things for the better.

If only we can keep the hippies from ruining it like they've done to so many life-saving and useful technologies.

Re:Oh wonderful (0, Flamebait)

damburger (981828) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419469)

Except, you ignorant fucktard, DDT is still in use in places where the risk of malaria is higher than the risks from DDT. But don't let me get in the way of your mindless knucle-dragging hippie-bashing with niggling little facts.

I am not saying ban them. Don't make shit up. They simply need to be regulated as their own chemicals, as all existing chemicals are before they reach the market. The governments of the world haven't caught up with the fact nanomaterials are different from macromaterials. Thats all. No need to whip out your right-wing talking points.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419533)

They simply need to be regulated as their own chemicals, as all existing chemicals are before they reach the market.

So if I'm on a desert island, I'm not allowed to try to make fire with plant oils, because there's no government around to tell me it's ok? Nonsense. Regulations such as this are unjustifiable rights violations. If someone pollutes your property, you can sue for compensation and they will be forced to stop, but you cannot justify your "preemptive lawsuit".

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Forbman (794277) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419715)

Hmm... there is a case right now of an organic produce farmer who sued his neighboring conventional farmer due to pesticide drift onto his organic fields, thus threatening the organicness of his enterprise. He sued, and won a $1 million award. The conventional farmer is not too happy, especially since he applied the pesticides in a legal fashion, conforming to the rules and regulations at the time, which were not in question...

It was interesting reading this in last week's Capital Press...

Not sure how I feel about this. It raises all sorts of issues, like "well, X was there before Y", etc.

But, what if you had an asthmatic child, and your neighbor, with permits and all the other blessing from the governmental authorities, had a large brush-pile fire, and the wind happened to blow the smoke at your house for several hours, and the resulting smoke caused your child to have a severe asthma reaction? Who's at fault, then?

But is it inherently different than having a tree on your property fall and damage neighbor's property... it's your tree, and your responsibility, even if the government just a month before sent out an arborist who declared the tree healthy and sound?
 

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420523)

But is it inherently different than having a tree on your property fall and damage neighbor's property... it's your tree, and your responsibility, even if the government just a month before sent out an arborist who declared the tree healthy and sound?

A tree falling is generally considered an act of god, but the specifics of a situation can vary wildly from area to area.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420761)

I think in all of these cases, it depends on you showing evidence that you reasonably tried to prevent any rights violations from occurring. You may still have to pay damages, depending on the severity of your negligence (e.g. if the tree that fell was one for which you had sawed almost completely through the trunk, and then let it sit there waiting for the slightest breeze to push it over). If you planted your garden on your property boundary, and then flooded it in pesticide without putting underground boundaries/drainage in place, you should likewise be seen as negligent if damages occurred on the neighbor's property.

Another DDT? (4, Insightful)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419493)

This could turn into another DDT

If by "another DDT", you mean, "another intergovernmental ban on a harmless product with great potential [bbc.co.uk] due to pressure from environmental hysteria, then I agree with you.

Re:Another DDT? (2, Insightful)

Cheesemaker (36551) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419735)

Harmless? That article refers to INDOOR USE... not the indiscriminate spraying that happened decades ago. DDT has its uses, but it is hardly harmless.

Please think (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420647)

it is hardly harmless.

The same can be said for any chemical, even water. The important thing is not the composition, but the dose. You can overdose on anything, but everything can be useful in the right dose. What I am advocating is the removal of emotionalism from the environmental agenda, and a move back towards science. The fact that people have overdosed their land on chemical X never implies that chemical X should be banned for use in any dose by anyone.

Re:Another DDT? (3, Informative)

frieko (855745) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420041)

It's not harmless, nor does the article you linked suggest that. What it says is the WHO has decided it's harmless to people and that its benefits justify all the dead birds.

Re:Another DDT? (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420671)

It's not harmless... it's harmless to people...

Which is it? What you're not realizing is that anything can be harmful, even water. The important thing is not the composition, but the dose. You can overdose on anything, but everything can be useful in the right dose. What I am advocating is the removal of emotionalism from the environmental agenda, and a move back towards science. The fact that people have overdosed their land on chemical X never implies that chemical X should be banned for use in any dose by anyone.

Re:Another DDT? (2, Insightful)

frieko (855745) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420907)

Which is it?

Uh.. Both. DDT is "not harmless" because it harms birds. DDT is "harmless to people" because it is... harmless to people. (practically)

What you're not realizing is that anything can be harmful, even water

I'm fully aware that water can be harmful. But thanks for insulting my intelligence.

everything can be useful in the right dose.

So I should start taking asbestos supplements? What's the useful dose?

Re:Another DDT? (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421609)

So I should start taking asbestos supplements?

Actually, that would probably be harmless - you're ingesting it, not inhaling it. In any case, I never said to do that.

Also, inhaling minute amounts of asbestos would be harmless; inhaling too much over long periods is bad though. If it's kept wet, it would be much safer, however we'll never know what possible advances can be made with it because it's been made illegal.

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Informative)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419597)

You mean the stuff that was damaging the Peregrine Falcon's eggs, and was later banned, only to have us find out that the eggs became even softer AFTER the ban? The eggs were soft because of PCB.

Bird populations were INCREASING before the ban, and decreased right after the ban.

DDT does not build up in animal tissue.

DDT is not harmful to humans.

DDT would save tons of lives.

Re:Oh wonderful (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421631)

"You mean the stuff that was damaging the Peregrine Falcon's eggs, and was later banned, only to have us find out that the eggs became even softer AFTER the ban?"

DDT and its byproducts persist in the environment for *years*, and they would persist in the fatty tissues of any falcon for the rest of their lives, continuing to affect egg shell thickness long after it stopped getting introduced into the environment and their food. A lag between a ban on the use of DDT and the return of peregrine falcon eggshell thickness is entirely expected. (Also, the ban occurred in the U.S. initially, but DDT was still being used in Mexico where many of the birds winter -- so they were still getting exposed).

While it is true that careful and targeted use of DDT to protect humans from malaria can save lives, it is also true that widespread use did seriously affect peregrine falcon, bald eagle, and several other bird populations. In parts of the world with heavy DDT use they almost went extinct (while populations elsewhere were unaffected). Strangely enough, these populations have recovered subsequent to the ban. There is a strong negative correlation between eggshell thickness and DDT/DDE concentrations. It has taken decades to improve because the stuff is so persistent in the environment and in animal tissues.

I wouldn't be surprised if PCBs and other organochlorines are an issue too, but to discount the effect of DDT/DDE is to ignore an awful lot of evidence. The introduction to this paper [springerlink.com] provides some of the background (the first page is accessible for free). To suggest that there's no connection to DDT/DDE is pretty ridiculous.

The whole point is: we don't HAVE to kill off whole other species in the process of saving humans if we use it properly (i.e. sparingly and carefully targeted).

Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit (1)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422119)

DDT does not build up in animal tissue. DDT is not harmful to humans. DDT would save tons of lives.

This is the most ignorant spew I've read on slashdot in years. Go read the Wikipedia article.

It accumulates in fatty tissue. It's found in the tissue of many adults today- despite having been banned FORTY YEARS AGO. That say something to you, asshole? Second: studies found proof that DDT and derivatives cause diabetes. Notice when diabetes became a big problem? Mmmm hmm, the last fifty or so years.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DDT#Effects_on_human_health

Read the PAGES of studies showing all sorts of health effects.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419761)

Wasn't it in Stephenson's "Diamond Age" that all nanotech had to be chemically inert and had to decompose within a limited time period?

Re:Oh wonderful (2, Insightful)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419833)

This stuff is great but it needs to be carefully regulated so we don't end up with an asbestosis-like problem down the road.

Government regulation is a good thing, when it comes to things like OSHA and the FDA. I don't think that the capitalist free market will put worker safety first when it comes to manufacturing a hazardous product (Bhopal, anyone), so its up to our governments to protect us from overzealous exploitation of wonderful new things.

Maybe nanotubes are not hazardous, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

Re:Oh wonderful (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420373)

What's so bad about DDT? It's one of the safest pesticides there is for indoor use. Irrational fear of DDT has caused millions to die from malaria, a disease that once was all most eradicated.

Polybathroomfloorine. (2, Funny)

argent (18001) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418719)

If a sphere that looks like a geodesic dome is bucminsterfullerine, then a tube that looks like a roll of fake PVC tiling should be called polybathroomfloorine. Except James Blish used that for a graphite-like chemical explosive already.

Paper Bicycle (1)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418785)

I hope they make a paper bicycle like the one in Virtual Light.

Re:Paper Bicycle (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419013)

You can get carbon fiber bike frames now. Bucky paper just seems a new angle on carbon fiber.

Re:Paper Bicycle (3, Funny)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419309)

Exactly. It's like carbon fiber, except electrically conductive and much, much stronger, and contains 50% or more actual carbon instead of the 1-5% that carbon fiber compositions currently contain (from TFA).

So, pretty much not like carbon fiber at all except that it contains carbon.

Re:Paper Bicycle (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419061)

You can make an bike out of ordinary paper. I have a pen made of tightly-wrapped paper, its indestructible (well, I'm sure it isn't, but its very strong stuff). A paper bike is certainly feasible, if the paper core of the bike was suitably 'carbon wrapped'.

Re:Paper Bicycle (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 5 years ago | (#25420673)

Newspaper can be laid up just like fiberglass and is surprisingly strong. I've heard of people building racing shells out of newspaper and shellac resin for the binder. It wouldn't compare with fiberglass and epoxy resin or even polyester but it certainly would be much cheaper to purchase, so it might be stronger per dollar than fiberglass

Mr. 9/11 (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419197)

I know one thing: it makes proposing crashing paper airplanes into Rudy Guliani sound a tad more threatening than intended.

very informative article (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25418819)

According to the article, buckypaper "conducts electricity like copper or silicon." So it's either a conductor or an insulator.

The article smells like roses or shit.

Re:very informative article (4, Informative)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419069)

According to the article, buckypaper "conducts electricity like copper or silicon." So it's either a conductor or an insulator. The article smells like roses or shit.

Actually, carbon nanotubes [wikipedia.org] can be either metallic or semiconducting, depending on the type. (Different "types" have a different arrangement of the graphene hexagons with respect to the tube axis: zigzag, armchair, or chiral.) So it is in fact correct to say that carbon nanotubes are either conductors or semiconductors.

Buckypaper [wikipedia.org] is made of nanotubes, so it will be conducting or semiconducting depending on its composition. Most nanotube production techniques create a mixture of tube types, so most samples of buckypaper will be a mixture of metallic and semiconducting components. The final electrical properties will then of course depend on the relative inclusion of the various types. (As well as other things, like alignment of the tubes, and interactions or bridging between tubes.) This is a virtue of buckypaper, in fact, since (in principle) we can tune the electrical properties as required for a particular application (while maintaining nearly the same mechanical performance).

(I agree that the article is poorly worded. The sentence is technically correct, but that's probably an accident.)

Re:very informative article (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419619)

Schrodinger's bullshit.

Smells like shit, AND has a the sharp, rich aroma of pure vanilla.

Re:very informative article (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419933)

According to the article, buckypaper "conducts electricity like copper or silicon." So it's either a conductor or an insulator.

well that will either be very good or very bad at mitgating lightning stikes if they ever make a tether for a space elevator out of this stuff.

According to the article, buckypaper "conducts electricity like copper or silicon." So it's either a conductor or an insulator.

Is even that strength to weight enough for a tether?

Re:very informative article (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419965)

arrgh second quote was supposed to be

Buckypaper is 10 times lighter but potentially 500 times stronger than steel when sheets of it are stacked and pressed together to form a composite.

ALways the same (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25418867)

I have yet to read about some invention that doesn't have some military tie-in. It seems like we don't invent things for any other purpose anymore. Is the US military really that underpowered? I doubt it.

Re:Always the same (4, Insightful)

Kemanorel (127835) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419031)

In the larger view, did we ever? Two things have spurred most advances in human history... War and sex. Of the two, war has been the dominant force for the large bulk of it. Even vaccines have war uses. If your army is immune to some biological agent and your enemy's is not, you can then use that agent as a weapon (unless you're playing by some arbitrary set of rules such as the Geneva Conventions - Note: I make no claim as to whether the GCs are positive or negative, but they are pretty arbitrary.). Even vaccines for chronic diseases such as polio help one's army by increasing the numbers of able-bodied workers and soldiers and decreasing the numbers of those who need support.

So what if it is developed for military purposes? It will trickle to the private sector soon enough, just as GPS, the Internet, and carbon-fiber composites have.

Re:Always the same (1)

thefekete (1080115) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422277)

Two things have spurred most advances in human history... War and sex.

Ok, I understand the military applications of bp. However, I'm a little confused as to the later...

already on the market (3, Insightful)

Goldsmith (561202) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418877)

If you want, you can get nanotubes (in multiple forms, including buckypaper) from Unidym [unidym.com]. This is the company which was founded by Richard Smalley. They've spent the last decade basically buying up patents and companies working with carbon nanotubes (in addition to doing their own research). If the Florida State guys have anything which isn't already covered by a Unidym patent, they'll just get bought up, or brought in, or something like that. Unidym seems to like collecting academic research partners.

Re:already on the market (3, Funny)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 5 years ago | (#25419167)

OK, guys it's Friday, so lay off the Troll moderation, but picture this:

"Hello, I'm Dick Smalley, and I specialize in production of small things!"

Re:already on the market (1)

jagdish (981925) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422367)

However, this article quotes Ben Wang, director of Florida State's High-Performance Materials Institute..

And I'm Ben Wang.

And... what? You think that is a good thing? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422175)

Do you somehow think that somebody buying up anything having to do with micro carbon structures is a good thing? That's about as good as having a name like Dick Smalley. (I know it was said elsewhere, but that is like a target painted on somebody saying "kick me". I would have changed my name while still an infant.)

Buckypaper + Gekco Grip = (1)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 5 years ago | (#25418885)

The eternal sticky note!

Never fades, can hold-up over 200lbs.

now, make the buckypaper into touch-sensitive photovoltaic e-buckypaper with a GB of memory or so and you have the perfect notekeeping device.

PGnaa (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419625)

confirmed that *BSD long term survival Jesus Up The fellow travellers? outstrips - Netcraft has All major surveys is part of the For membership. problem; a few impaired its quarreled on - Netcraft has of the GNAA I progress. In 1992, member. GNAA (GAY log on Then the the time to meet Software lawyers whole has lost luck I'll find AMERICA) is the To fight what has haapiness Another you down. It was Of challenges that than this BSD box, person. Ask your started work on who are intersted

Fishing rods (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25419875)

Space elevator? New types of vehicle construction? Hah. Fishing rods.

Google up some results for 'IM7', one of the current strongest epoxy graphite composite materials. Exclude 'altec' from your search results, unless you're interested in speakers. What is IM7 used for? Fishing rods.

It's Dick Cheney's connections to the defense industry that has helped the fishing rod manufacturers get early access to such technology, I'm telling ya! The first journalist to conclusively shed some light on this shadowy connection will win a Pulitzer for sure!

Asbestos of the 21st century? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421625)

Cause last time a material changed the world so much it didn't work out so well.

Conductive? (2, Interesting)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422555)

Whoa. Didn't know that.

Soon as I read "airplane" and "conductive" in the same article ideas started coming to me.

Umm.........lessee......If you alternated NON-conductive layers in with the Buckypaper composite body of the aircraft, one could theoretically design/build-in all the electronic circuitry right into the structural body. Printed circuits inside the walls of the aircraft, essentially. Save even more weight, not to mention cost, when you could toss all that copper/silver currently used for wiring.

Build the body of the aircraft, then simply add more layers to the inside for circuitry.

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