Glass bubbles are regularly used as fillers in the materials that make up airplanes, cars, and boats, among other things. They reduce the weight of vehicle parts and coatings by 15 to 40 percent, which helps cut back on fuel consumption. Vehicles like jet skis, ATVs, motorcycles, and snowmobiles can also benefit from this density reduction.
And they're in a multitude of other objects in your day-to-day life, including shoes, paint, golf balls, and deck chairs. Why? Because the featherlight glass bubbles can make these objects buoyant, solar reflective, and cool in temperature. Their spherical shape even allows them to roll over each other like ball bearings, improving flow properties and stresses, and therefore reducing the warping of any parts. And they take up to 20 times more space than typical mineral fillers.
These glass bubbles have also been utilized in the depths of the ocean. In a 67-mile underwater pipeline through the Mediterranean, glass bubbles support the flotation devices that suspend the pipes 820 feet below the surface. Each year, this pipeline supplies 20 billion gallons of fresh water from Turkey to Cyprus, where demand for water outweighs the supply.
And in the western Pacific Ocean, glass bubbles were used in the durable material that allowed a submersible to survive intense pressure in the Marianas Trench, the deepest known point on earth.
This article comes from vox edit released