New Crystalline Might Allow Us to Breathe Underwater

New Crystalline Might Allow Us to Breathe Underwater

Scientists from Denmark have developed a crystalline substance that pulls oxygen from a room and also manages to take out oxygen from water.

The stored oxygen, which can be absorbed from air or water, can be released when and where it is required by putting it under a small amount of heat. It is able to store the gas at a much higher concentration than oxygen tanks. It might allow us to breathe underwater without oxygen tanks.

Professor Christine McKenzie at the University of Southern Denmark said the crystal could be useful for lung cancer patients who must take heavy tanks around with them. She also said that one day divers may be able to leave the oxygen tanks at home and instead get oxygen from this material as it filters and concentrates oxygen from nearby air or water.

"A few grains contain enough oxygen for one breath, and as the material can absorb oxygen from the water around the diver and supply the diver with it, the diver will not need to bring more than these few grains", said McKenzie.

The substance has been named 'Aquaman crystal', after the DC comic book character who can breathe underwater. It contains sponge-like consistency and its key component is cobalt, which lets it to absorb oxygen.

McKenzie explains that Cobalt provides the new material accurately the molecular and electronic structure that allows it to absorb oxygen from its surroundings. The substance has been developed and synthesized at University of Southern Denmark. Scientists at the University of Sydney, Australia, made some of the gas uptake measurements with special equipment.

The crystals are made from a sodium/Cobalt mixture and apart from gobbling up oxygen from its surroundings. It changes color also, depending on the level of its oxygen saturation. The crystals are black when oxygen content is at its highest, and it converts to pink when the oxygen is released.


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