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Dry Ice Made into Super-tough Glass

CowboyNeal posted about 8 years ago | from the sublime-windows dept.

197

janus zeal writes "A form of solid carbon dioxide that could be used to make ultra-hard glass or coatings for microelectronic devices has been discovered. The material, named amorphous carbonia, was created by scientists from the University of Florence in Italy. Writing in the journal Nature, the team says the material was theoretically possible but had never been created. It was made by squeezing dry ice, a form of carbon dioxide used to create smoke in stage shows, at huge pressure. Scientists are interested in the new material because of the potential applications. Also, they believe it could give them clues to the processes that happen in the center of huge gas giant planets such as Jupiter."

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197 comments

Needs a bit more work first though.... (-1, Redundant)

IWannaBeAnAC (653701) | about 8 years ago | (#15555145)

From the BBC article,

The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure.

LOL!

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (1)

hector_uk (882132) | about 8 years ago | (#15555152)

yeah, ice is pretty damn hard at -270 degrees i hear too.

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555205)

So are nipples. But you don't see those used in construction, do ya?

(Well, actually you do. But on the workers, not the buildings. And let's face it, those aren't nipples most of us want to see.)

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (3, Funny)

ronz0o (889697) | about 8 years ago | (#15555159)

At room temperature, dry ice vaporizes. The only way for it to maintain its structure is under pressure. All we need to do is find some way to lower the global temperature and increase pressure...

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (4, Funny)

RsG (809189) | about 8 years ago | (#15555175)

Well, we could suck all the Co2 out of the atmosphere. This would remove the greenhouse effect, both the manmade one and the naturally occuring one, and drop the planetary temperature. And we get our Co2 for making this stuff in the bargin! It's a win-win situation (well, except for the living - they'll be royally screwed - but they were just taking up space anyways).

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (1)

CoolVibe (11466) | about 8 years ago | (#15555292)

> Well, we could suck all the Co2 out of the atmosphere. That would kill all the plants and also our main source of Oxygen, which we need to be able to breathe. Great going! :)

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (1)

reklusband (862215) | about 8 years ago | (#15555373)

Humor nazi mode engaged. IT WAS A JOKE. TO the showers with you. End Humor nazi mode.

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555512)

well, except for the living - they'll be royally screwed

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555647)

But instead of increasing the pressure, this will actually lower the pressure!

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (1)

hador_nyc (903322) | about 8 years ago | (#15555284)

From the BBC article, The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure. LOL!
Obligatory reference to the movie Real Genius "... now if we can just keep it from exploding!"

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555336)

Aye, and transparent aluminum will be next.

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (0, Redundant)

Cheapy (809643) | about 8 years ago | (#15555528)

All he said was "LOL!" and he was modded up as informative? Damn. I'll try it.

The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure.

ROFL!

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (-1, Redundant)

CommunistHamster (949406) | about 8 years ago | (#15555758)

Hey, now you're +4 Insightful! This seems a good lark, I'll give it a go: The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure. ROFLCOPTERLOLLMAOZOMGBBQh4x

Re:Needs a bit more work first though.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555577)

Pretty simple....just remove the oxygen and change it into a crystalline form from amorphous.

How do we know he didn't invent the stuff? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555146)

I don't see this stuff replacing transparent aluminum anytime soon.

Just needs Stability, (5, Insightful)

klik (93694) | about 8 years ago | (#15555148)

This is a hell of a thing if hey manage to find a way of making it stable at room teperature and pressure - a glass that has a similar strength to diamond made from a highly available source material? I can see a ridiculous number of uses for this!

Re:Just needs Stability, (5, Funny)

kfg (145172) | about 8 years ago | (#15555170)

. . . if hey manage to find a way of making it stable at room teperature and pressure. . .

Easy enough. Simply apply the Congressional Model of engineering; redefine room temperature and pressure.

KFG

Re:Just needs Stability, (4, Funny)

RsG (809189) | about 8 years ago | (#15555227)

That, or we use the NASA model and swap the units of measurement. Kelvin you say? Well let's just assume they meant Celsius!

Re:Just needs Stability, (3, Interesting)

McBainLives (683602) | about 8 years ago | (#15555421)

Hey- not every member of Congress is that dumb. Don't ask me to name 'em, of course...

But I digress.

I think you're on to something here- but instead of redefining the temperature and pressure, re-define the room. Maybe this stuff could be used for constructing deep-sea exploration vehicles and habitats. That'll shave off a few degrees / add a few atmospheres to the temperature and pressure targets.

Remember:
Up on the shore they work all day
Out in the sun they slave away
While we devotin'
Full time to floatin'
Under the sea...

Re:Just needs Stability, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555559)

yeah, too bad dry ice sublimes much faster in water...

Re:Just needs Stability, (2, Interesting)

RsG (809189) | about 8 years ago | (#15555188)

I wonder if this is similar to Aerogel?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerogel [wikipedia.org]

From the description in TFA it seems similar, but I don't have the background in chemistry to make an educated guess. Anyone with credentials care to enlighten me?

And if this stuff is just a new aerogel varient, what's the advantage to it? I was under the impression that we'd need to make aerogel in space if we wanted it in quantity, this new stuff seems to have been made on earth, but requires pressure and/or cold to stay stable.

Re:Just needs Stability, (4, Informative)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 8 years ago | (#15555253)

No, it's like glass, except with carbon replacing the silicon.

Re:Just needs Stability, (3, Informative)

ottothecow (600101) | about 8 years ago | (#15555302)

No, this is nothing like aerogel

Aerogel is pretty fricking sweet though. (and for other reasons than the fact that it can float and carry things)
its a great insulator and there are some (carbon?) aeogel's that are conductive of electricity...pretty cool stuff, quite expensive though

Re:Just needs Stability, (3, Funny)

Martin Blank (154261) | about 8 years ago | (#15555545)

It's also extremely brittle. I have a little bit that an aerogel manufacturing company sent to me after a polite request based on curiosity. It was just an irregular scrap piece from the machineroom floor, about an inch thick, two inches wide, and four inches long, and the gentleman was kind enough to mail it to me free of charge (I offered to pay for it). Within two minutes of taking it out of the plastic case, it had become two pieces, and in the years since has become about seven pieces.

The MSDS enclosed with it said that it had no known toxic effects, so a friend ate a small piece, just a few millimeters on a side, before I could stop him. It didn't hurt him, but it left his mouth feeling weird. He is a bit of an eccentric, though.

Re:Just needs Stability, (3, Informative)

KozmoStevnNaut (630146) | about 8 years ago | (#15555645)

but it left his mouth feeling weird

You probably already know this, but that was probably an effect of aerogel being extremely absorbant. If it wasn't so expensive to manufacture, it would probably make an ideal replacement for kitty litter for cleaning up oil spills and the like.

It can be treated to become extremely hydrophobic, though, allowing it to be cut with precision water jet cutters and such.

Re:Just needs Stability, (5, Funny)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 8 years ago | (#15555217)

Um, diamond is made from a highly available source material. Under much the same conditions actually. It also has the minor advantage of not evaporating at room temperature and pressure.

Re:Just needs Stability, (5, Funny)

svtdragon (917476) | about 8 years ago | (#15555658)

At the right temperature and pressure, a ring made from dry ice leads to frostbite and ring made from diamonds leads to sex. That's another advantage.

Re:Just needs Stability, (1)

HaMMeReD3 (891549) | about 8 years ago | (#15555694)

I guess the point being, compressed carbon at room temperature = diamond,

lol.

Re:Just needs Stability, (1)

s_p_oneil (795792) | about 8 years ago | (#15555584)

It needs a bit more than stability to gain popular use. It has to be cheap enough to manufature, and the current manufacturing process doesn't sound cheap. Why can't you buy a cooler or a thermos that's insulated with aerogel? Because it would be ridiculously expensive. ;-)

Well, Duh... (5, Funny)

Baldrson (78598) | about 8 years ago | (#15555164)

The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure.

Reminds me of the cartoon of the scientist at the blackboard with a series of equations on one side and concluding equation on the other with "And then a miracle happens." in between.

Re:Well, Duh... (2, Funny)

cp.tar (871488) | about 8 years ago | (#15555241)

the cartoon of the scientist at the blackboard with a series of equations on one side and concluding equation on the other with "And then a miracle happens." in between.

Do you have that cartoon?

It would come in very handy next time I have enough free time to go argue with Creation Scientists.

Re:Well, Duh... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555271)

Creation Scientists.

I understood the first word and the second one. But put together like that? It doesn't parse.

Re:Well, Duh... (1, Offtopic)

cp.tar (871488) | about 8 years ago | (#15555390)

It doesn't parse.

That's why I used initial capital letters.

It's just a name. A symbol. A mere designation (disclaimer: average Creation Scientist may not prove to be either so hot or so cool as 7 of 9).

It doesn't really have to mean what it says.
Just check all the United, People's and Democratic Republics of whatever throughout history.

P.S. If you want a laugh, go here [objectiveministries.org] . Check the projects. Try the veal. You have been warned.

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

RsG (809189) | about 8 years ago | (#15555553)

I was able to hold a straight face up until this little gem "Honorable mention: Thermodynamics of Hellfire"... then I cracked up. And I felt bad for the poor little kids - they'll never understand even basic level science if the adults in their life encourage them to use faulty logic and reasoning.

Side note - I love the part about a project that put the building blocks of life into a jar and watched them not evolve. You'd think they'd at least try to replicate these guys:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller-Urey [wikipedia.org]

Re:Well, Duh... (2, Informative)

swillden (191260) | about 8 years ago | (#15555771)

And I felt bad for the poor little kids - they'll never understand even basic level science if the adults in their life encourage them to use faulty logic and reasoning.

Just to be sure: You did realize that whole web site is satire, right?

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

IWannaBeAnAC (653701) | about 8 years ago | (#15555800)

Unfortunately, objectiveministries.org is not satire. Did you mean landoverbaptist.org or whitehouse.org instead?

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

rcjhawk (713563) | about 8 years ago | (#15555309)

> Do you have that cartoon?

Well, not personally, until now, but a quick search finds:

http://www.sciencecartoonsplus.com/images/miracle3 .gif [sciencecartoonsplus.com]

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

cp.tar (871488) | about 8 years ago | (#15555346)

Much obliged!

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

IWannaBeAnAC (653701) | about 8 years ago | (#15555490)

Wow, that would be really hilarious, if it wasn't so tragic:

1st Place: "Life Doesn't Come From Non-Life": Patricia Lewis (grade 8) did an experiment to see if life can evolve from non-life. Patricia placed all the non-living ingredients of life - carbon (a charcoal briquet), purified water, and assorted minerals (a multi-vitamin) - into a sealed glass jar. The jar was left undisturbed, being exposed only to sunlight, for three weeks. (Patricia also prayed to God not to do anything miraculous during the course of the experiment, so as not to disqualify the findings.) No life evolved. This shows that life cannot come from non-life through natural processes.

What an astounding piece of deductive reasoning! Give the girl a Nobel prize!

2nd Place: "Women Were Designed For Homemaking": Jonathan Goode (grade 7) applied findings from many fields of science to support his conclusion that God designed women for homemaking: physics shows that women have a lower center of gravity than men, making them more suited to carrying groceries and laundry baskets; biology shows that women were designed to carry un-born babies in their wombs and to feed born babies milk, making them the natural choice for child rearing; social sciences show that the wages for women workers are lower than for normal workers, meaning that they are unable to work as well and thus earn equal pay; and exegetics shows that God created Eve as a companion for Adam, not as a co-worker.

WTF? I wonder what Patricia thought of the second place getter?

The high school prizes are just scary. 1st Place: "Using Prayer To Microevolve Latent Antibiotic Resistance In Bacteria". Huh?

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

svtdragon (917476) | about 8 years ago | (#15555685)

I particularly love the honorable mention from middle school: "Dinosaur & Man Walked Together" - Donny Findlay (grade 6) *facepalm*

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

fermion (181285) | about 8 years ago | (#15555269)

s. harris [sciencecartoonsplus.com]

Brilliant guy. I have loved his cartoons since I was a kid. Have most of his collections. If you want a true belly laugh, get a copy.

Re:Well, Duh... (4, Funny)

kfg (145172) | about 8 years ago | (#15555365)

"And then a miracle happens" . . .

We mixed it with a bit of room temperature and pressure gaseous diamond. Unfortunately this only works so long as we keep it immersed in room temperature and pressure molten gold.

If we can just work out how to. . .

I find it interesting that one of the things this company is pushing is that it would be a solution to binding excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. I thought the solution to that was simple and obvious:

Take your carbon dioxide and some plain water. Crack the water into hydrogen and oxygen. Crack the carbon dioxide into carbon and oxygen. You're left with a lot of . . .oxygen. Hurray! Let it go in the air and breath deep.

Now you've got carbon and a hydrogen. Combine the two and you'll get a sort of brown-black goo which will be a bit of a disposal problem, since you'll eventually end up with billions of barrels of the stuff, but really, all you have to do is inject it under pressure into underground sand and shale deposits and it can sit there safe for millions of years.

Problem solved.

Of course you have to be careful. There's a certain risk that when the hydrogen and carbon combine you'll just end up with billions of barrels of vodka instead of brown-black goo and lord only knows how we'd manage to dispose of that.

KFG

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

svtdragon (917476) | about 8 years ago | (#15555707)

Of course you have to be careful. There's a certain risk that when the hydrogen and carbon combine you'll just end up with billions of barrels of vodka instead of brown-black goo and lord only knows how we'd manage to dispose of that. College students!

Re:Well, Duh... (1)

kfg (145172) | about 8 years ago | (#15555722)

And as a side effect this will help with our college student disposal problem.

KFG

Most important use (5, Funny)

chiller2 (35804) | about 8 years ago | (#15555169)


Scratch-proof iPod screens of course! ;)

Re:Most important use (2, Funny)

Fackamato (913248) | about 8 years ago | (#15555181)

Well, it might crack, it's glass afterall... :-p

Re:Most important use (1)

cbuskirk (99904) | about 8 years ago | (#15555501)

Then Apple would get sued because some kid drew on it with permanent marker and Apple failed to provide adequate protection against markers.

Re:Most important use (3, Informative)

waferhead (557795) | about 8 years ago | (#15555516)

Diamond-like-carbon (DLC) has been used to make scratch resistant plastic for years.

It is either sputtered on or PECVD, applied under vacuum.

It _is_ carbon glass.

It exists already, just not made using the high pressure method the article blathers on about.

Ouch (0)

saskboy (600063) | about 8 years ago | (#15555182)

As if getting crushed by atmospheric pressure wasn't bad enough on the Jovian aliens, now they are getting pelted with hard glass when they venture into th Giant Red Spot storm too?

Um... a bit too intricate? (1, Interesting)

Heavyporker (922078) | about 8 years ago | (#15555185)

Wouldn't it be easier to just fund more research into making current diamond-producing processes better at forming larger pieces of diamond which could be used to make plate glass or such? I mean, geez, carbon dioxide a solid at room temperature...

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (5, Informative)

MustardMan (52102) | about 8 years ago | (#15555204)

With my experience in scientific publications (especially physics!) there is usually a paragraph at the beginning of every paper trying to find some practical application. Probably 50% of these applications are pure horseshit thought up at the last minute. A lot of us do things for the sake of better understanding the world around us, and don't really know if there will be a practical application. And, if there DOES turn out to be an application, it's sometimes something we certainly didn't predict.

I haven't read the Nature article yet, but I have a feeling the "understand a planet and coat lenses" bit was thrown in as fluff to justify the research. It's pretty much accepted practice, and I know I'm not the only one who barely glances at the first paragraph in most papers.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

MustardMan (52102) | about 8 years ago | (#15555215)

sometimes something we certainly didn't predict.

Don't bother, grammar nazis... I realize this sentence is awful. Wow... I should really proofread my posts.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555245)

Didnt you just do that?

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 8 years ago | (#15555431)

It's very reassuring to hear that. I remember hearing a scientist give a lecture on "memory metal" he was helping develop, which, if elevated above a certain temperature, would keep a shape, even if the temperature went back down. As an application of this, the *best* think he could think of was that you could stick these in frozen fish containers when shipping them to certify the fish had stayed frozen the whole trip. I was thinking a) if they can fake a report, they can switch out the metal, and b) we already have ultra-cheap memory thermometers that can do this.

Now, if it's actually the case that the application is a last minute kind of throwaway thing from the scientist, and not intended to be the justification for the research, that's much more reassuring. Scientists generally can't predict what their new technique will be used for -- and that's good because it's not their subject matter.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

edbarbar (234498) | about 8 years ago | (#15555507)

But you would agree if it were known apriori there could be NO application to a research avenue, there isn't much use for the research.

It's not as if taxpayers want to subsidize your interest in understanding the world: that's your business. In the agreggate, taxpayers want something back for their investment..

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (2, Interesting)

1u3hr (530656) | about 8 years ago | (#15555530)

But you would agree if it were known apriori there could be NO application to a research avenue, there isn't much use for the research.

You can confidently say there is no application (this millenium at least) for at least half of physics research, most astronomical or maths research, not to mention the Arts, where people would be highly offended if you even asked them for a practical application.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

MustardMan (52102) | about 8 years ago | (#15555541)

No I would not agree.

It's safe to say that most cosmology research will never have a practical application, yet I am glad my tax dollars support such research. Some taxpayers, especially those in the parts of the country where science is seen as a tool of the devil, don't support science for the sake of science. I'd like to think that the more enlightened ones do.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

edbarbar (234498) | about 8 years ago | (#15555635)

It's safe to say that most cosmology research will never have a practical application, yet I am glad my tax dollars support such research.

Then you ought to support it, but don't ask me to. If there is no application (value) to the public, what's the point of doing the research? What's the point of putting money into a sinkhole? It isn't as if science is going to send us for heaven for paying it lip service.

where science is seen as a tool of the devil, don't support science for the sake of science

Science for the sake of science? That sounds a lot like worshipping. Science doen't have feelings. People do science because they want to. Should taxpayers subsidize every hobby?

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (4, Insightful)

susano_otter (123650) | about 8 years ago | (#15555799)

It isn't as if science is going to send us for heaven for paying it lip service.

True, but it does consistently reward us for methodically searching for interesting things in unusual places.

Think of it as a form of assay: You assay every square mile of territory, not because you like assaying, or you think there's something worth mining in every square mile of territory, but to find out which square miles have something worth mining.

I'm not paying for science for the sake of science. I'm paying for a thorough assay of the territory.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (2, Interesting)

fermion (181285) | about 8 years ago | (#15555531)

I know what you mean about the application section. It seems that sometimes researchers just look around the room and figure out an application for the first thing they see.

In this case the lens thing may not be so crackpot. SiO2, quartz, is the lens and glass material used in certain situations. Single crystal is just in the more demanding cases, but amorphous is used where possible. The size of a single crystal quartz stone is limited due to growth constraints. Chemicaly CO2 and SiO2 might bind well enough to allow the amorphous glass to be used in more situations. Don't know, been a while since I worked with eitherbut it seems like on of the first things that might be tried as soon as they get the process working.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

s13g3 (110658) | about 8 years ago | (#15555601)

no, because while diamond is hard, in certain directions it is considerably more fracile and therefore not at all suited to making a glass replacement, as cost will always be prohbitive when compared to sticking some sand into a furnace for a few minutes for any standard application. The potential for either bit of research, though, is super-scratch resistant coastings (in the case of artificial diamonds) and high-strength and density glasses for specialized applications, such as in heavy industry or aerospace, and then only in instances where performance under stress is the defining factor, not cost. Barring a huge revolution in nanotech in the next 50 years, we're never going to see either in daily applications such as IPod screens and car windshields.

Re:Um... a bit too intricate? (1)

ridgecritter (934252) | about 8 years ago | (#15555733)

Agreed. Any synthesis process that requires 400KBar is just about guaranteed to be too expensive to use for mass markets. An example is diamond synthesis using the high pressure high temperature process - while you can make single crystal diamonds this way, they're not economic (i.e., they're more costly than natural gem-grade material) for esthetic or industrial apps that need big (>5mm diameter) chunks. There is a big market for diamond abrasives made with the HPHT processes, but even so, diamond grit is a lot more expensive than silicon carbide. The cost has mostly to do with the extreme pressure needed. It's expensive to get to those pressures, expecially if you want to make more than a milligram or so, which is what the Italian researchers did.

Stable at room temp? (5, Informative)

MustardMan (52102) | about 8 years ago | (#15555189)

I'm not on campus (it's saturday, wee!), so I can't access the original Nature article, but I have a feeling the "stable at room temp" bit was misinterpreted by the BBC writers. I really don't see any practical way to keep the molecules together at room temp and atmospheric pressure - there's a reason CO2 is a gas. Silicon glass is a sort of weird case - most materials that show a glassy transition do it at a much lower temperature, or are largely temperature independent. When people try to run simulations to describe glassy behavior, they generally assume zero-temperature and quenched disorder.

FWIW, I spent the last two years working on computational study of spin glasses, and am working on my PhD in soft condensed matter, of which glasses are a huge part.

Re:Stable at room temp? (1)

espressojim (224775) | about 8 years ago | (#15555369)

NPR (or quirks and quarks, or nature podcast, I forget) covered this.

This material is only stable at a 1/2 million PSI (or atmospheres, I forget which.)

They are trying to combine it with silica to form a stable compound that is harder than regular glass, but that's a long way off, and I'm not sure how hard the resulting material will be - you'd assume that it would be harder than glass, but softer than this new substance.

Re:Stable at room temp? (2, Informative)

Sky Cry (872584) | about 8 years ago | (#15555546)

From TFA:
"The next stage of the research is to work out how to make the glass stable at room temperature and pressure."
BBC got it right - it's not stable at the room temperature yet.

Re:Stable at room temp? (1)

schon (31600) | about 8 years ago | (#15555614)

working on my PhD in soft condensed matter

You know, I had to read that twice to understand what you meant... (or at least what it seems you meant - I doubt you're trying to tell us that you do your PhD work while immersed in a puddle of goo. :o)

Not so much with the dry ice any more (4, Interesting)

jfengel (409917) | about 8 years ago | (#15555190)

For stage shows, fog machines are far more controllable and produce better results than dropping dry ice in water. They use "fog juice" rather than dry ice.

Though sometimes you'll use dry ice to cool the resulting fog. The hot fog gives you a smoky, atmospheric effect. If you want ground-hugging fog, you've got to cool it down, and dry ice is a pretty good way to chill it quickly.

Re:Not so much with the dry ice any more (1)

Secrity (742221) | about 8 years ago | (#15555261)

But dry ice / carbon dioxide doesn't make your clothes smell. I hate going to performances that use fog juice type fog machines because of the smell. I also wonder what the physiological effects of vaporized glycols are.

Re:Not so much with the dry ice any more (1)

jfengel (409917) | about 8 years ago | (#15555453)

Yeah, I suffer for my art.

I have no idea what the long-term effects are. And God knows the dry ice is more fun to play with. But if you want fog right in a particular place at a particular time, nothing beats a fog machine.

I do theatrical work, not concert work. Concerts usually just crank up the fog and let it go, the more fog the better. In a play there are scenes with fog and scenes without fog, and it's really nice to be able to control that with a guy in the light booth rather than dumping pellets into a bucket. Not to mention the ability to pump fog wherever you want it.

But it sure do stink.

Re:Not so much with the dry ice any more (1)

radish (98371) | about 8 years ago | (#15555777)

I (and several friends) spent an evening in hospital on oxygen after an accidental "over-fogging" at a local laser tag arena a few years ago. We were holding a small room in a complex made from an old bank vault when the fog machine went crazy and filled the whole space with fog. Of course sensible people would have left when the breathing became hard but we had a position to defend :) Cue collapse, paramedics and aformentioned hospital stay. Fortunatly the match was a team training event not a public game so there were no small kids about, otherwise it could have been much nastier.

I'm sure the problem was mainly due to a lack of oxygen rather than any toxic effects of the fog itself, but it does sting your eyes and throat at high concentrations.

Re:Not so much with the dry ice any more (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555364)

... and mixing carbon dioxide (about 1.5 times as dense as air) into the fog will also be a great help in keeping it hugging the ground.

Re:Not so much with the dry ice any more (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555462)

That isn't quite correct. The type of fog used depends on the the effect needed, and although one can pump hot smoke through an ice box to create a low laying for, wil still rise as it warms up. Dry ice foggers are still the best for low laying fog, although liquid nitrogen is becoming popular as well, it is best saved for bursts or jets of smoke. There are also systems using liquid CO2 again for the bursting effect. For the most part chemical fogs are used only when a light haze is required, or when the cheapest option available is required.

Carbonite?!?! (1)

coldPhage (770396) | about 8 years ago | (#15555208)

All I want to know is ... can I capture and transport my bounties in it????

Carbonia is lovely this time of year (3, Funny)

ScentCone (795499) | about 8 years ago | (#15555209)

Cheap flights into Elbonia often connect through the Amorphous, Carbonia international airport. Unfortunately the town's not very stable when it's warm out.

Re:Carbonia is lovely this time of year (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555393)

I did not know Carbonia had an airport, let alone an international one. Time to update the wikipedia entry? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbonia/ [wikipedia.org]

Finally! A solution to global warming! (3, Funny)

brian0918 (638904) | about 8 years ago | (#15555233)

All we have to do is start sucking up all the carbon dioxide out of the air, and convert it into little waste cubes that can be dumped in landfills or baby seal breeding grounds. It's foolproof!

Hate to break it to you, but (1)

pjt33 (739471) | about 8 years ago | (#15555508)

Baby seals don't breed.

Re:Finally! A solution to global warming! (1)

Neptune0z (930626) | about 8 years ago | (#15555515)

So whats the problem here? CO2 in solid form, would be pretty much inert, and with a little work; probally would make a great building material...Whats wrong with putting what would normally just be waste to good use...Stop being such a tree hugging hippie!

hehehehehe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555250)

Hehehehehehehe...Carbonia...

I think this takes ... (5, Funny)

AstronomicUID (929210) | about 8 years ago | (#15555256)


the term Vaporware Windows to a whole new level!

Re:I think this takes ... (1)

kfg (145172) | about 8 years ago | (#15555499)

Congratulations. You have just won the KFG Prize for this article.

Your baby sister can collect it from me at the Hotel Emporio, Tiujuana.

KFG

Stability - (1)

RoffleTheWaffle (916980) | about 8 years ago | (#15555317)

If it's not stable at room temperature or pressure, I wonder what happens when it breaks. As for that jazz about understanding the inner workings of the planet Jupiter...

I for one welcome our new exploding glass overlords.

PA1+PA2...=NA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555391)

"A form of solid carbon dioxide that could be used to make ultra-hard glass or coatings for microelectronic devices has been discovered. The material, named amorphous carbonia, was created by scientists from the University of Florence in Italy [CC] [MD] [GC]."

So how much prior art will go into the upcoming patent? [slashdot.org]

BTW "That is plain wrong. Every single claim is a granted monopoly, regardless of the number of the claim and of whether it's an independent or dependent claim."

If your going to play slashlawyer then your going to have to back this up. Sorry but we have a reputation to maintain.

Re:PA1+PA2...=NA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555593)

"If your going to play slashlawyer then your going to have to back this up. Sorry but we have a reputation to maintain." You're doing your part by not knowing the difference between YOUR (it belongs to YOU) and YOU'RE (contraction of YOU ARE).

Big question: Does it flow? (1, Insightful)

mpaulsen (240157) | about 8 years ago | (#15555407)

This could be really big for space travel if it overcomes the main shortfall of common glass windows: sagging and ultimately flowing right out of the window frames over time. This is a huge barrier to the long-term space travel needed to get to other solar systems. Just imagine how fast normal glass would deform if they spun the space ship to maintain 1G! Does anyone know if this new glass is more flow-resistant?

It's also worth noting that this stuff doesn't do so well under normal temperature and pressure. It seems like it would be great for space travel since there's almost none of either out there.

Re:Big question: Does it flow? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555467)

I don't care enough to come up with any evidence, since you didn't either apparently, but what you said makes absolutely no sense at all. Perhaps you're thinking of the urban legend about cathederal windows?

Re:Big question: Does it flow? (1)

mpaulsen (240157) | about 8 years ago | (#15555569)

Sigh. Well _I_ though it was funny.

A link to an article about glass flow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555646)

Glass flow, read all about it [glassnotes.com] . For your reading pleasure.

solve global warming (1)

pintomp3 (882811) | about 8 years ago | (#15555427)

put all the excess carbon dioxide into our ipod screens.

super tough glass ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555432)

What was the surprise of the terrorists when they attempted to crash another plane into the brand new skyscraper.

What should we call it? (1)

gimplar (913105) | about 8 years ago | (#15555533)

What should we call this incredibly tough transparent material made from dry ice (CO2)? I know , we should call it diamond!

Re:What should we call it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555624)

Except diamonds are pure carbon.

Dry Ice harder than iron (1)

MadMagician (103678) | about 8 years ago | (#15555554)

This was in science fiction about the outer satellites 40 years ago. When will you people learn to go to the original source??

special effect smoke? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 8 years ago | (#15555572)

Is this the only this we can say about dry ice that the layman understands? The industrial applications of dry ice are quite numerous, it has far more utility than making magic smoke

Not stable at room temperature/pressure (1)

Animats (122034) | about 8 years ago | (#15555610)

This stuff only exists under huge pressure; it's not stable under ordinary conditions.

Compare xenon hexafluoride [wikipedia.org] , a compound of an inert element, something once thought to be impossible. It is also created under high pressure, but it remains a crystalline solid at room temperature and pressure.

Sounds like a good way to destroy the world (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555706)

Creating a form of carbon dioxide that's solid at room temp - kind of reminds me of ice-nine.

Dictionary Definition. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555711)

> dry ice, a form of carbon dioxide used to create smoke in stage shows

I'm pretty sure that's the dictionary definition of dry ice. Yep; just checked. Good to know there's actually a use for it.

Space! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15555756)

Does anyone else see the temperature req for dry ice and think space? sure, limited demand, but eh, one day itd be good. After all, what sucks more than your window breaking in space? damn kids with a baseball can be lethal.
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