Carbon nanotube speakers powered by lasers

New research paves the way for ubiquitous speakers made from a series of carbon nanotubes.

Do you want to rock out to laser-powered speakers that cover your windows and walls? Soon you may be able to, thanks to carbon nanotubes (the super-strong material under being considered for the construction of space elevators). Researchers have found that sheets of carbon nanotubes produce high-quality, audible sound when heated with infrared lasers. Just think: A stereo system built into the walls of your home, or the interior of your car, that produces excellent audio without wires or cables.

The accompanying photo shows an electron microscope image of a carbon nanotube "forest" being stretched into sheets. The "forest" (left) is comprised of millions of vertically aligned nanotubes. When the edge of the forest is stretched at one end, the "trees" of carbon nanotubes lean over and grab the neighboring trees, so the entire forest will pull away into a very long, almost transparent sheet of nanotubes (right). Speakers can be made from either the forest or the sheets.

As Dr. Mikhail Kozlov, the lead author on the study, describes:

"Speakers made with carbon nanotube sheets are extremely thin, light and almost transparent. They have no moving parts and can be attached to any surface [and] can be concealed in television and computer screens, apartment walls, or in the windows of buildings and cars."

What does this mean for the future? Ubiquitous talking surfaces coating the insides of buildings? Large-scale noise-canceling devices to create quiet areas in loud restaurants?

UT Dallas via Gizmodo

Follow GeekTech on Twitter or Facebook.

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags speakerslasers

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Alessondra Springmann

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?