11 thoughts on “Transparent aluminum

  1. Wasn’t there an instance of Scotty giving some 20th Century person the formula for some super kind of aluminum in an episode of the original series?
    And stopping a .50 BMG AP round? Was that in the movie or in real life?

    • I don’t recall it in the original series. Just in the movie I linked to and the video clip above.

      That doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, I just don’t recall it from the original series.

      The stopping of the .50 BMG AP round with only 1.6″ of it? Gee… if only someone would provide a link to that…

      • I think you’re right. It’s been a long time since I saw “The Voyage Home” and I think I saw it in a theater. That’s the one with the whales, right? That might be where I’m remembering it from.

  2. Price on request-government funding recommended. The refractive index might make it interesting for lens elements.

    • Same refractive index (within a percent or so) as alumina, which is cheap and common, and making optical elements from it is a well understood technology. Actually, what makes materials interesting as lens materials compared to existing ones is a different ratio of refractive index to dispersion (for achromatic lenses) or a different dispersion vs. wavelength curve, or a different (especially wider) passband. Here that doesn’t seem to be the case (alumina has a wider passband).

  3. Um, no.
    That’s not transparent aluminum, that’s a transparent aluminum compound. Nothing unusual there. In fact, transparent aluminum compounds have been known for millennia; sapphires and rubies are examples, and if you remove the impurities that produce those colors you have the mineral corundum. That’s both transparent and very hard, which is why it’s been used as “glass” in watches and smartphones; steel and sand wont’ scratch it.

  4. Where are my flying cars, though? I was promised flying cars?

    (Just kidding. The way people drive nowadays, I’d rather they stay on the road.)

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