Ever want to buy a piece of Aerogel?

Aerogel United Nuclear is selling small and large pieces for $30 and $125 respectively.

I’ve always wanted to see Aerogel in person, and hold it. The pieces for sale are all odd shapes, like remnants. The small pieces are about the size of a grape and tend to be roughly spherical or cubic. The large pieces are about 4 times the volume of the small pieces and tend to be flatter in one dimension, with more variety of shape. You can see pictures of representative samples here.

The page describes Aerogel’s properties, one of which was a surprise: it shatters. This shouldn’t be surprising, since the material is basically 3% glass and 97% air. But still, the marketing person who came up with the name Aerogel was taking some liberties. I wonder what the engineer(s) who first developed the material first called it?

Explore posts in the same categories: Astronomy Links

One Comment on “Ever want to buy a piece of Aerogel?”

  1. will Says:

    It looks as though United Nuclear stopped selling pieces of silica aerogel (they still carry granules). The good news is that it looks like you can buy discs of sample size (about 1″ across) at http://www.buyaerogel.com. They also seem to carry blankets and the granules as well. Hope if anyone is looking for aerogels this helps them find the stuff.

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