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"The idea I want to push next is that the United States should make Siberia a Protectorate. Pay the Russians off a hundred, two hundred billion dollars and simply run Siberia in an ecologically responsible way."
- Gregory Benford

Inertron  
  Material with all the properties of heavier metals, but lighter.  

Inertron is the second great triumph of American research and experimentation with ultronic forces. It was developed just a few years before my awakening in the abandoned mine. It is a synthetic element, built up, through a complicated heterodyning of ultronic pulsations, from "infra balanced" subionic forms. It is completely inert to both electric and magnetic forces in all the orders above the ultronic; that is to say, the sub-electronic, the electronic, the atomic and the molecular. In consequence it has a number of amazing and valuable properties. One of these is the total lack of weight. Another is a total lack of heat. It has no molecular vibration whatever. It reflects 100 percent of the heat and light impinging upon it. It does not feel cold to the touch, of course, since it will not absorb the heat of the hand. It is a solid, very dense in molecular structure despite its lack of weight, of great strength and considerable elasticity. It is a perfect shield against the disintegrator rays.
From Armageddon: 2419 A.D., by Philip Frances Nowlan.
Published by Amazing Stories in 1928
Additional resources -

Here's how it is used:

Wilma and I had received our battle equipment from the Gear Boss. It consisted of a long-gun, a hand-gun, with a special case of ammunition constructed of inertron, which made the load weigh but a few ounces, and a short sword. This gear we strapped over each other's shoulders, on top of our jumping belts. In addition, we each received an ultrophone, and a light inertron blanket rolled into a cylinder about six inches long by two or three in diameter. This fabric was exceedingly thin and but it had considerable warmth, because of the mixture of inertron in its composition.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Armageddon: 2419 A.D.
  More Ideas and Technology by Philip Frances Nowlan
  Tech news articles related to Armageddon: 2419 A.D.
  Tech news articles related to works by Philip Frances Nowlan

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