An anonymous reader writes: Scientists from GE Global Research announced this morning yet another breakthrough in an ongoing project to develop new anti-icing applications from coatings created in the lab using nanotechnology, which involves the science of materials at a very tiny scale (a nanometer is one-billionth of one meter). At the nano-level, materials behave differently than they do at a normal scale, and GE material scientists have focused on creating superhydroponic, or extremely water repellent, materials as coatings for surfaces that could prevent icing. The new research presented today shows that in addition to dramatically reducing ice adhesion on surfaces, the experimental “nanotextured” coatings also delay ice from forming under simulated atmospheric icing conditions in the lab. While a non-coated surface will experience ice formation almost immediately under those conditions, the GE researchers found that a surface with the nanotextured coating won’t for approximately 80 seconds.
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