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aerogel

aerogel, any of a group of extremely light and porous solid materials; the lightest is less than four times as dense as dry air. Aerogels are produced from certain gels (see colloid) by heating the gel under pressure, which causes the liquid in the gel to become supercritical (in a state between a liquid and a gas) and lose its surface tension. In this state, the liquid may be removed from the gel by applying additional heat, without disrupting the porous network formed by the gel's solid component. Silica-, melamine-, and carbon-based aerogels have been produced. Silica-based aerogels are among the lightest, and some, nicknamed "solid smoke" or "frozen smoke," are nearly transparent. Heavier aerogels were first developed in 1931 and have been used to detect high-energy particles emitted by particle accelerators. Newer, lighter aerogels with relatively high insulating properties are being tested as substitutes for the chlorofluorocarbon foams used as refrigerator insulation and as replacements for the air between the panes of double-glazed windows; other aerogels are being used as filters.

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stardust

star·dust / ˈstärˌdəst/ • n. (esp. in the context of success in the world of entertainment or sports) a magical or charismatic quality or feeling: a gang of Hollywood stars anointing us with sparkling stardust.

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Stardust

Stardust A NASA mission, due to be launched in 1999, to return samples from the coma of comet Wild 2.

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stardust

stardustadjust, august, bust, combust, crust, dust, encrust, entrust, gust, just, lust, mistrust, must, robust, rust, thrust, trust, undiscussed •stardust • sawdust • angel dust •bloodlust • wanderlust • upthrust

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Stardust

Stardust ★★★ 2007 (PG-13)

Tristan (Cox) wants to win the love of cold-hearted Victoria (Miller) by promising that he'll retrieve a star that's fallen into the magical realm bordering their village. But he discovers that the star has transformed into the lovely Yvaine (Danes)—and Tristan isn't the only one who wants the prize. Among the others are Lamia the witch (Pfeiffer) and cross-dressing pirate Shakespeare (De Niro). The mix of epic magical fable, swashbuckling adventure, romance, and “Princess Bride”-style irreverence doesn't always mesh, but eventually settles into an involving and satisfying tale. Based on the novel by Neil Gaiman. 128m/ C DVD, HD DVD . GB US Charlie Cox, Claire Danes, Robert De Niro, Sienna Miller, Michelle Pfeiffer, Peter O'Toole, Jason Flemyng, Rupert Everett, Mark Strong, Henry Cavill, Ricky Gervais, Nathaniel Parker, David Walliams, Kate Magowan, David Kelly, Sarah Alexander; D: Matthew Vaughn; W: Matthew Vaughn, Jane Goldman; C: Benjamin Davis; M: Ilan Eshkeri; Nar: Ian McKellen.

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