Yep, you read it right, spray-on glass. It could revolutionize the fields of agriculture, medicine, fashion, transportation - really, it would be easier to list where it might not be applicable. The remarkable product, called Liquid Glass, was developed by the German nano-tech firm Nanopool GmbH. Their patented process, known as “SiO2 ultra thin layering” involves extracting silica molecules from quartz sand, adding them to water or ethanol, and then... well, they won’t tell us what they do next, but the end result is a 100 nanometer-thick, clear, flexible, breathable coating that can be applied to almost any surface. We’re told that there are no added nano-particles, resins or additives - the coating is formed using quantum forces.

The possible uses are endless.

Liquid Glass can sprayed on within seconds, creating an anti-microbial, easy-to-clean barrier that will last from one to several years, depending on the surface. It has already been used at Ataturk’s Mausoleum in Turkey, in certain UK hospitals, on a train, and on furniture. Liquid Glass has also been used in agricultural trials, where it was applied to the leaves and seeds of vines. The leaves were successfully protected from mildew, while the seeds didn’t require anti-fungal chemicals. It could also be used on clothing such as gowns or tuxedos, on kitchen surfaces (it’s food-safe and environmentally-friendly), on car interiors - really, on anything that people want to keep clean. Because you would essentially just be cleaning glass, objects treated with it would supposedly clean up easily with plain water, as opposed to harsh cleansers.

Liquid Glass is already available for domestic use in Germany, and should be coming to the UK early this year. No word on other markets yet.