STEPHANIE GETTY, NASA GODDARD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEPHANIE GETTY, NASA GODDARD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Carbon nanotube material. Scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of hollow carbon nanotubes used by NASA to make a new super-black material that absorbs light across multiple wavelength bands. This material absorbs on average more than 99 percent of the ultraviolet, visible, infrared, and far-infrared light that hits it, a development that promises to open new frontiers in space technology. The coating is a thin layer of multi-walled carbon nanotubes, tiny hollow tubes made of pure carbon about 10,000 times thinner than a strand of human hair. They are positioned vertically on various substrate materials much like a shag rug. It is especially useful vor a variety of spaceflight applications where observing multiple wavelength bands is important to scientific.
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