Science has its own laws and theories and I am sure that you all must have read for all these years as it has been published in books and there are even videos and documentaries and articles but that was until now. You must be all so confused about what I am saying right now. So let me simplify it for you. My dear readers, I am sure that you all know that things are supposed to expand when they are heated. Like it is the most basic rule of chemistry and physics that when you heat things up, they get bigger. While there are exceptions like water and ice, it’s difficult to find a material with zero thermal expansion. Like any grade 2 child would know about this because it is common sense. But now my dear readers the next thing which I will say is going to completely keep your minds blown.
New researchers from the University of New South Wales and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation have found a compound that doesn’t thermally expand at least, not between -269°C and 1126°C according to the reports. This new substance these researchers have found is composed of scandium, aluminum, tungsten, and oxygen (Sc1.5Al0.5W3O12), bonded together in a crystalline structure.
Neeraj Sharma, an associate professor at UNSW, who is a part of this research said that “We were conducting experiments with these materials in association with our batteries-based research, for unrelated purposes, and fortuitously came across this singular property of this particular composition,” he goes on by saying that “The scandium is rarer and more costly, but we are experimenting with other elements that might be substituted, and the stability retained”.
Can you imagine the number of advantages it will bring if we are able to produce this zero-thermal expansion? It is in high demand in areas such as the engineering disciplines. Where they’re required for high-precision mechanics, aerospace components, and medical implants. The substances with which this compound is made are quite widely available so it should be possible to manufacture at a large scale but scandium is very rarely available as stated above so the research is still under process. Till now this material is stable across the widest range of temperature discovered so far, from 4 Kelvin to 1400K.
After knowing this I am sure there must be a hell of a lot of questions in your mind as you would love to know the reason behind why isn’t this particular substance expanding? What is so special in this substance which isn’t there in the other substances? Because at such a large temperature range and the substance still does not expand seems very shocking, where is all that heat energy going and accumulating in the bond lengths which have expanded? Or what exactly is happening inside. I am sure that you all must be wishing that you all could just become tiny and dive into the substance to see what exactly is happening inside the substance but unfortunately, that is not possible and even if it would be I don’t think any human can stay alive in that high and low temperature. Anyways don’t worry my dear readers as all your questions will be answered all you need to have is a little bit of patience and the researchers are still trying to figure out what exactly this magical substance is.