Kryptonite Discovered By Scientist
Dr. Chris Stanley, a minerologist at London's Natural History Museum, was puzzled when mining Group Rio Tinto brought him an unusual specimen.
(Chunk of sodium lithium boron silicate hydroxide)
Discovered in a mine near Jadar, Serbia, the mineral had a known chemical formula - sodium lithium boron silicate hydroxide. Using his own expertise and specialized resources, Dr. Stanley was unable to identify the mineral. Finally, he did what the rest of us would have done at the start - he searched for the formula on the Internet. And got lots of hits.
It turns out that this mineral had already been described - in Superman comic books and movies. The formula is an exact match for Kryptonite, the fictional mineral. Kryptonite, according to DC Comics, was created when the planet Krypton blew up. Dr. Stanley explains:
"Towards the end of my research I searched the web using the mineral's chemical formula - sodium lithium boron silicate hydroxide - and was amazed to discover that same scientific name, written on a case of rock containing kryptonite stolen by Lex Luther from a museum in the film Superman Returns.
"The new mineral does not contain fluorine (which it does in the film) and is white rather than green but, in all other respects, the chemistry matches that for the rock containing kryptonite."
As true fans know, green kryptonite is the most common variety, taking away Superman's powers and eventually killing him. Quick to spot a good plot device ("technovelgy"), writers soon introduced variations like gold, red, white and blue kryptonite. The worst of these is gold kryptonite, which removes Superman's powers permanently.
(Superman Shows Off Kryptonite Collection)
Real "kryptonite" (that is, sodium lithium boron silicate hydroxide) is not a cool, glowing mineral; rather, it is a boring white, harmless substance. Dr. Stanley hastens to add, however, that it fluoresces a pinkish-orange under ultraviolet light.
Scientists are not allowed to use the name "Kryptonite" for the mineral owing to their insistence on following the stodgy, dusty international nomenclature rules that note that "krypton" is a real element. They will call it "jadarite" instead, after the town near the mine where it was found.
If you are interested in unusual real-life materials with science-fictional qualities, take a look at these articles:
Read more about how 'Kryptonite' is discovered in mine.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 4/24/2007)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
3D Printed Graphene Aerogel - So Light!
'... light as cork and stronger than steel...' - Edgar Rice Burroughs, 1929.
Vantablack Now IMMEASURABLY Black
'a black coating now thatís ninety-nine percent absorptive...' - Doc Smith, 1934.
New Paper - Write With Light Erase With Heat
Writing with light, erasing with heat.
Reconfigured Graphene 10X Strong, 5 Percent Dense, As Steel
'...It was made of Alohydrolium, which is the lightest of all metals.' - Hugo Gernsback, 1911.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
LaWS Laser Can Take Out Rogue Drones
Looks like a weapon for the Runaway squad!
Moon Express Lunar Robot Mining: Shine On, Harvest Moon
'The bulldozer moved through the lunar strip mine... '
Liquid Body Armor For TALOS Exoskeleton
'... instantly became rigid all over when something struck it...'
Hyperloop One Video Shows It Works!
'Complete evacuation of the interior of the tubes [and] a wave that provides the new propulsive energy for the cars...'
Chairless Chair Exoskeleton By Sapetti
'Earth's scientists... devised rigid metallic clothing...'
Publishing Technologies In Science Fiction
Well, this should be enough references to start...
Russia Working On Military Exoskeletons
'Вы похожи на большую стальную гориллу...'
3D Printed Bionic Chinese Skin
Your skin is ready!
Flexup Tire Design Good For Tumblebugs
'Each spoke telescopes into five sections.'
3D Printed Graphene Aerogel - So Light!
'... light as cork and stronger than steel...'
Asteroid Deflection With DART
'This obelisk is one huge deflector mechanism...'
Translate One2One From IBM's Watson Your Communication Solution
'It then excretes into the mind of its carrier a telepathic matrix...'
News Now Philip K. Dick's Bailiwick
'A vast complex electronic organism... responsible to no one...'
Autonomous BADGER Robot Drilling Machine
'The compacted matter... makes a better tunnel lining than concrete, don't you think?'
TALOS Exoskeleton Development Proceeding
'Suited up, you look like a big steel gorilla...'
Autonomous Robots Navigate Like Rats
'Out of warrens in the wall, tiny robot mice darted.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories