Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"Science fiction writers, I am sorry to say, really do not know anything. We can't talk about science, because our knowledge of it is limited and unofficial, and usually our fiction is dreadful."
- Philip K. Dick

Transparent, Frictionless Coating  
  An absolutely frictionless, impenetrable coating.  

In the book, the Way Station is a galactic transfer point that has been built into an existing building. In this case, an old cabin belonging to a Civil War veteran. The entire exterior surface of the cabin is protected by an impenetrable, frictionless coating.

It was as if the knob was covered with some hard, slick coating, like a coat of brittle ice, on which the fingers slipped without exerting any pressure on the knob.

He bent his head close to the knob and tried to see if there were any evidence of coating, and there was no evidence...

He tried a thumbnail on it, and the thumbnail slipped but left no mark behind it... The rubbing of his palm set up no friction.

There was something covering this house which made it slick and smooth - so smooth that dust could not cling upon its surface nor could weather stain it.

He pounded the clapboard with his fist, and it was like the pounding of a rock...

From Way Station, by Clifford Simak.
Published by Doubleday in 1963
Additional resources -

The concept of a frictionless surface is relatively modern. In the 4th century BC, the natural philosopher Aristotle postulated that, to keep a body in motion, a constant force must be applied. Given our daily experience, this seems to be true - nothing keeps moving forever. Following the work of Newton and others, however, the idea of a frictionless surface or environment (like airless space) came to be widely discussed in science.

What solid has the lowest coefficient of friction? As far as anyone knows, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), a polymer of fluorinated ethylene, is the slipperiest solid material. PFTE is better known under its brand name - Teflon. It was discovered in 1938 by Roy J. Plunkett at DuPont; it was made available as a commercial product after WWII in 1946.

Compare to telelubricator from The Exalted (1940) by L. Sprague de Camp.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 2 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Way Station
  More Ideas and Technology by Clifford Simak
  Tech news articles related to Way Station
  Tech news articles related to works by Clifford Simak

Transparent, Frictionless Coating-related news articles:
  - Anti-Adhesive Surfaces Of Plants
  - Ion Mask - Plasma Coating Waterproofs Electronics, Fabrics
  - BAM! It's More Slippery Than Teflon (And Greener)
  - Liquid Glass Universal Spray-On Protectant
  - Shatterproof Phone Screens Coming Soon

Articles related to Material
3D Printing Of Metallic Glass
Draw Circuits With Conductive Ink
How To Encode The 'Memory' Of Materials
Surface Film Repels All Bacteria

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

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.

 

 

 

 

More News

Sci-Fi Helps Young Readers Build Resiliency
'Reading science fiction and fantasy can help readers make sense of the world.'

I Want My 1928 Telestereo Hologram Now
'Instantly there appeared standing upon the disk, the image of a man...'

Memes Now Come From Neural Nets
'Your order said for him to be able to be able to work out twists on the gags in the file...'

Robot Dog Learns To Be Doggy From Real Dogs
'So we took pictures of Guzub making a Three Planets, and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'

Unwanted Cruise Ships Huddle Together Out At Sea
'On the screen they passed in an endless, boundaryless flood of green specks...'

Sono Sion Electric Car Charges As You Drive
'It drew its power from six square yards of sunpower screens on its low curved roof.'

News Mood Filter Web Extension
'He adjusted the n, the r and b knobs, and hopefully anticipated a turn for the better...'

Fetal Lamb Rests In Artificial Womb
'... stewing warm on their cushion of peritoneum and gorged with blood-surrogate and hormones, the foetuses grew and grew...'

MIT Wants To Catch Interstellar Visitors
'INVESTIGATE MYSTERIOUS OBJECT ENTERING NEW CALEDONIA SYSTEM FROM NORMAL SPACE'

AutoX Sets Up Asia's Largest Robotaxi Center
'The robot cab seemed to know where it was going and, no doubt, the master machine from which it received its signals knew.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.