How Researchers Create the Lightweight, Durable, and Extremely Versatile Material Syntactic Foam

Motherboard traveled to New York University in New York City to speak with Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Nikhil Gupta about syntactic foam, a lightweight, durable, and extremely versatile material that shows up in all sorts of different places, from airplanes to soccer balls.

We fill these tiny hollow particles inside our material to get the porosity. If you don’t have the tiny hollow particles, you just make a material porous like a kitchen sponge. It doesn’t have any strength and it also absorbs a lot of water.