Speaker: Dr. Timothy Strobel (Carnegie Institution for Science, Earth and Planets Laboratory)

Tuesday, September 28, 2021 | 6:30 p.m. EDT

Ice cubes melt when taken out of the freezer. But what if water could persist in the solid state when left on the kitchen counter?

This unusual water would be called metastable. Long-term metastable persistence is not (yet?) possible for ice on the counter, but it turns out that many other materials can get locked into metastable forms for time periods similar to the age of the universe. More than half of all known materials are in metastable states and it is predicted that hundreds of millions more are possible—but currently unmade. By navigating strategic synthetic pathways of pressure, temperature, and composition, it is possible to access these states and produce new materials with important properties for energy, climate, medicine and other applications.

In this lecture, Dr. Timothy Strobel will discuss future prospects for conquering metastability, provide a live demonstration of high-pressure materials generator technology and highlight some of the cutting-edge metastable materials recently discovered at the Earth and Planets Laboratory.