If you love Marvel comics (and films), then you know that in the universe created by Stan Lee, the most durable material on Earth is metal vibranium. From it, in particular, the shield of Captain America and the costume of the black panther was made, in whose native country – Wakanda – he was found. In comics, this material exists in several versions and is found in isolated regions of our planet. Vibranium also has the ability to absorb all vibrations in the vicinity, including kinetic energy (the energy of a moving body) directed directly at it. In reality, of course, vibranium does not exist, but this does not mean that there is not a single material on Earth that can compete with it. But what is the most durable material on our planet?
From a car to some electronic devices in your home – both in nature and in the laboratory – the modern world is filled with impressive materials. Moreover, scientists are constantly looking for new materials that could be used in everyday life, in laboratories and even in space. But measuring the strength of a material is not equivalent to measuring hardness. You might think that these two words are synonyms, but for an experienced specialist this is far from the same thing.
The strength of the material determines its resistance to deformation, while the hardness allows you to find out whether it is easy to scratch the material.
What is silicon carbide?
Silicon carbide is an inorganic chemical compound of silicon and carbon. In nature, silicon carbide can be found in the extremely rare mineral moissanite. Moissanite in nature can be found in some types of meteorites, as well as in deposits of kimberlite and corundum. The material is used as imitating diamond inserts in jewelry, however, most often, silicon carbide is used in the automotive industry, electrical and astronomical instruments. It is important to understand that almost any silicon carbide that is used in industry is synthetic.
Natural moissanite was first discovered in 1893 by Ferdinand Henri Moissan in the form of hexagonal plate inclusions in the Diablo Canyon meteorite in Arizona. The mineral gained its name in 1905. Although Earth’s silicon carbide is incredibly difficult to detect, it is widespread in space. So, moissanite is present in gas clouds around stars rich in carbon, as well as in pristine meteorites.
How and why are titanium alloys used?
Titanium alloys are alloys whose main component is titanium (a light, strong silver-colored metal). Titanium alloys are used in many industries, including sports cars, commercial aircraft and rockets. Titanium alloys are very corrosion resistant. However, due to the high cost of production, these materials are used only in high-tech industries. In terms of prevalence on Earth, titanium is in 10th place, contained in the earth’s crust – 0.57% by weight and in seawater – 0.001 mg / l. In the earth’s crust, titanium is almost always present only in oxygen compounds. In free form does not occur. In large primary deposits, titanium is found in Russia, the USA, Kazakhstan, China, Norway, Sweden, etc.
Spider silk is one of the most durable materials on Earth.
In fact, spider silk is one of the most durable natural materials on our planet. As you probably know, spiders use the web to catch prey and protect offspring. Although the strength of spider silk varies from species to species, spider silk is almost as strong as stainless steel. Agree, this is pretty serious. That is why a spider-man from a notorious fictional universe is capable of so famously and usefully spider silk. Perhaps in the future, spider silk will be used as a muscle for robots.
Diamond is the hardest natural mineral
Diamond is the hardest known natural mineral that has ever been found on our planet. Another amazing property of this natural mineral is its ability to have an unlimited duration of existence. It should be noted that diamond is rare but at the same time fairly widespread mineral. Industrial diamond deposits are found on all continents except Antarctica. Due to the varying number of colors, diamonds are used in a wide range of industries, including manufacturing. At the same time, despite its hardness, a diamond is very easy to scratch – but only with another diamond. There is still no exact scientific data on the origin and age of diamonds, although according to some studies, its age can vary from 100 million to 2.5 billion years.
Moreover, meteorite diamonds of extraterrestrial origin are known, since this hardest natural mineral on Earth also forms upon impact during the fall of large meteorites on our planet. However, the diamond takes the most amazing property after scientists place it.
Why is graphene the material of the future?
Graphene is the most durable material known to man. Being transparent, graphene consists of a single-layer carbon atom located in a triangular lattice and is the main structural element of charcoal, graphite and carbon nanotubes. In its strength, graphene is 200 times superior to steel. The variety of chemical and physical properties of this most durable material on Earth is due to the crystalline structure and chemical bonding of carbon atoms, which make up graphene. Use this amazing material in the aerospace and automotive industries. Of course, graphene is not a vibranium, but it is quite capable of competing with it, given that in the future, with the help of graphene, scientists will probably make a huge number of various discoveries. So, with the help of this ultra-strong and thin material, scientists will be able to repair broken bones and even prevent fractures.