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Old July 16 2013, 07:45 PM   #7
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Re: Bill Gates invents transparent aluminium!

Alumina-based glass has been around for ages, and every time someone develops a new application for it, someone in the media screams "Hey, they invented transparent aluminum!" But alumina (aluminum oxide) is not aluminum any more than water is hydrogen or salt is chlorine. It's rock, not metal. And it's not even remotely surprising for alumina (aka corundum, aka emery) to be transparent, because it's the stuff that rubies and sapphires are made of.

And what's bizarre is that one of these stories crops up every few months, and yet somehow people don't remember the multiple previous times this "invention" was "announced."
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

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