Nanofoams, such as this one made from porous silica, are able to absorb large amounts of energy without structural failure
Prof. Qiao's nanofoam-testing gas gun
Given that scientists are already looking to sea sponges as an inspiration for body armor, perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that foam is also being considered ... not just any foam, though. Unlike regular foam, specially-designed nanofoams could someday not only be used in body armor, but also to protect buildings from explosions.
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