Have you ever wondered what will be the possible outcome if you dry out an under-weight substance? Especially, if they are formed from gas and gel! You are left with 99% of air now. In such scenarios you get an uncanny substance named aerogel! It’s also metaphorically attributed as “aerogel cube” or “frozen cloud”. This delicate substance has been used in many products.
Aerogel was formulated in 1931 by Dr. Sameul Kistler, over a wager at the College of the Pacific in California. The aerogel has been in existence for more than 80 years.
The aerogel is the lightest substance. Its formation entails approximately 50-99.5% air, still it has certain sustainable properties.
Scientists have developed dozens of products by using aerogel. Let’s do an experiment.
Amalgamate various chemicals together, wait for them to resolve into a damp gel, and then suck all the dampness out. The end product will be an exceptionally low-density object.
Yet, air is considered as an awful medium for heat, and aerogel is fundamentally composed of it.
The basic formation of Silica
The primary formation of aerogel consists of silica-class minerals, which are based on the footings of Silicon and Oxygen – two most prevalent constituents in the earth’s lithosphere.
Durable with an element of fragility
As far as the durability and fragility is considered, the aerogel cube is durable enough to hold up a thousand stones’ weight and the vacancy of space. But on the contrary, it’s as fragile as a lily. If carbon aerogel and silica aerogel are mixed, this combination will cover about 700 square feet of particle size per gram. This means that aerogel is equivalent to the size of an ice cube.
Acts as a thermal insulator
Aerogel acts as an anti-heat shield by blocking heat to transfer from one place to another. Therefore, aerogel is considered as a high quality thermal insulator. It is quite high-budgeted and currently it’s not being used in buildings or households.
A multitasker usability
Aerogel is no less than a multitasker and can be used in formulations of modern beauty products, paints, swimsuits, roof trusses, and carpets. By being integrated into extremely thin, wet, yet very trendy winter wear, it is also finding its way into the fashion market.
The textile can efficiently preserve the heat generated by the body by lining some areas of the apparel with aerogel, which only retains a minute temperature. The anti-toxic, highly porous essence of aerogel, the ability to cover a wide surface area, and the possibility to accommodate up to seven times its weight make it one of the most significant cleanup tools.