New record set for world’s most heat resistant material | Imperial News

Researchers have discovered that tantalum carbide and hafnium carbide materials can withstand scorching temperatures of nearly 4000 degrees Celsius. In particular, the team from Imperial College London discovered that the melting point of hafnium carbide is the highest ever recorded for a material. Being able to withstand temperatures of nearly 4000°C could pave the way for both materials to be used in ever more extreme environments, such as in heat resistant shielding for the next generation of hypersonic space vehicles. Tantalum carbide (TaC) and hafnium carbide (HfC) are refractory ceramics, meaning they are extraordinarily resistant to heat. Their ability to withstand extremely harsh environments means that refractory ceramics could be used in thermal protection systems on high-speed vehicles and as fuel cladding in the super-heated environments of nuclear reactors. However, there hasn’t been the technology available to test the melting point of TaC and HfC in the lab to determine how truly extreme an environment they could function in. The researchers of the study, which is published in the journal Scientific Reports, developed a new extreme heating technique using lasers t...

Elon Musk Suggests Adding “Dragon Wings” to Starship

Sometimes, it’s easy to tell if space travel visionary and meme reviewer Elon Musk is joking on Twitter. Other times, not so much. Just before the return of HBO’s mega-hit “Game of Thrones,” Musk tweeted that he was “thinking about adding giant stainless steel dragon wings to Starship” that could allow his eventually-Mars-bound spacecraft to keep cool during re-entry. “Starship will land on a ring of fire,” he added later. With steel membrane wings like a Dragon, we may be able to lower Starship’s orbital reentry temp to ~1000 degrees C, which would allow the whole surface to be uncooled bare metal When asked how serious he was on a scale of one to ten, Musk gave the plan a 6.5. And, to be fair, we’ve thought Musk was joking about plenty of things before — leading to his fair share of successes. 22awg Coiled Power Cable He put together a company devoted to digging tunnels called The Boring Company, for instance — and even marketed a novelty flamethrower. Besides, SpaceX’s Starship is just as much of a moonshot as Musk’s other endeavors: a spacecraft that’s meant to shift the paradigm interplanetary travel, eventually offering up to 100 passengers a trip to the Moon or even Mars....