As we all know, clothes make the man, so a new formula coming out of NUI Galway means that very soon we can all be dressing as Batman......o.k. that is a bit of a stretch, but the formula, the result of a collaboration between Irish and Italian mathematicians, works out how much voltage soft conductive or ‘dielectric’ membranes can take before they break. Up until now, it was impossible to know what the breaking point of these materials was, and if this sounds familiar, this exact method was used to construct Batman’s cape in Batman Begins. Let Dr. Michael Destrade at the school of Mathematics, Statistics, and Applied Mathematics in NUI Galway explain how it works:
The real world applications of this formula could lead to ‘smart’ clothing, or artificial human muscles. Or, of course, a snazzy cape to go along with your vigilante outfit.
If you can remember the scene in Batman Begins where this huge bat cape emerges from a tiny folded piece of material, that’s the kind of technology which is being developed currently in some labs around the world, especially in Harvard University and in China.